Organic Isn’t Dead: A Beginner’s Guide To Growing Your Audience Authentically
Over and over we hear people bemoan “organic reach is DEAD” or “the algorithm is blocking my content!” Many people have noticed that over the years their reach, likes and overall engagement have dropped even though their number of followers have increased, so it is natural to blame the so called “pay-to-play” system.
While it is true that organic reach is harder to achieve, it isn’t because the platforms are actively trying to keep you down or to make you pay to be seen. The truth is there are A LOT of users trying to get attention. Facebook has over 2.2 BILLION active users (66% of whom use it daily.) Instagram has over 1 billion active users worldwide and Twitter has a 328 million users tweeting about 656 million times per day. If you’re blogging, there are almost 3 million blogs published PER DAY.
That is all to say, there is a LOT of content being pushed on every platform every minute of the day. In fact, 90 percent of the data in the world was generated over the last TWO years. So how do you get your content seen in the overwhelming pool of content?
In a world where everyone is vying for attention, quiet confidence speaks volumes and attracts users. Growing your audience isn’t about being seen by or attracting everyone online. It is about finding your tribe; the group of people who like what you like and share values and beliefs with you/ your brand. You can’t please everyone, so spend your energy finding people who want what you’re offering.
Instead of waiting for these people to find you, it is your job to find them and introduce yourself and your products to them. Seek-out and interact with your ideal clients to help them discover you. But be careful not to be be spammy and don’t poach in your competitors’ comment sections or you’ll probably find yourself blocked.
Social media was designed to be social. That means, no blasting the world with just your stories and your promotions. Just like the people at a party who won’t stop talking about themselves, nobody wants to follow an account that only promotes their own products and services. If you aren’t giving people a reason to discuss and engage with you, they will find somewhere else to engage, and somewhere else to spend their money.
Share Other People’s Content
In trying to build a community and provide resources to your clients, it is important to share content from those in your industry. You’ll not only be in the feeds of your customers more often, but you can earn retweets/ reposts to spread your name to more audiences. Plus, if you share and provide value, other people make be more likely to share your content too.
A simple way to increase engagement is to ask for it! Ask people to comment, share or reply. Make it super easy for people to participate by giving direct questions or prompts. If you’re a food blogger, you could ask “what was your favourite childhood meal? Share in the comments!” or a life coach could say “share your biggest goal for the year in the comments.” Make it even easier to join the discussing by including things like polls or yes/ no questions.
There is no one quick way to beat the algorithms. For every loophole and hack, there is an update that closes it. The best trick to getting real engagement is by being worth following and engaging with.