Social media is one of the best ways to market yourself and your brand, but it goes beyond just posting videos and pictures. 

Engagement and interacting with your followers is important to not only keep them following you, but also to help you get to know each other, even if you haven’t met in person (yet). And it’s an easy and (mostly) free way to add people to your client base. 

Here are five ways you can boost your engagement and grow your business. 

#1—Contests and Giveaways

Everyone loves free stuff, right? Right! So, giving away a gift card or another free item is the perfect way to get your followers to actively participate by liking, commenting, sharing, or tagging friends, which boosts your engagement and visibility. 

One creative way I did this was by using the green screen on Instagram. Behind me were pictures of a home I held an open house for several years ago. I had my followers “Name That Price” by guessing how much they thought the home was worth today. 

People who guessed were entered into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card. I set it up in ManyChat so that anyone who guessed the price was automatically messaged to provide their email address to be entered into the contest. 

It was fun and easy for people to interact, and because it required them to provide an email address, I was able to add them to my growing database. Now, I have their information for future marketing and communication with them apart from social media. 

Plus, contests and giveaways add an element of fun to your content and are more likely to capture attention. 

#2—Polls

Posting a poll on Instagram is an effective way to boost engagement and interaction with your audience. Since polls are naturally interactive, they encourage people to actively participate by making a choice between two options. 

Using your Stories on Instagram, post a poll that allows your followers to make a choice, whether it’s real estate-related or something more fun or personal. 

Over the holidays, I did a “This or That” and had people choose between two Thanksgiving dishes or desserts. Around Christmas time, they picked between Christmas movies or other traditions. 

Other times, I have asked my followers to pick between two paint colors or kitchen designs. 

Don’t overthink it! Polls allow for quick and easy participation. They can be fun and lighthearted, make you more relatable, and get conversations going. 

Polls can also increase your visibility since interactions poke the algorithm to let it know your content is interesting and prompting it to put your post in front of more people. 

#3—Surveys

Surveys are similar to polls but can be a little more strategic for engagement. A lot of times I like to use them more for business than for fun. 

For instance, I recently posted “What is the top thing buyers are looking for when choosing a home in 2024?” 

Then, I provided four responses for my followers to choose from. I got a lot of engagement from it, and it was interesting to see the different responses from people. 

Using surveys by offering multiple choice questions or open-ended responses can provide valuable insights into your audience’s preferences, opinions or maybe even challenges they could be facing.  

Having and using that information from your surveys gives you an opportunity to tailor content around addressing specific needs, questions, concerns or challenges, by providing solutions and other valuable information, making you the knowledgeable and helpful professional.

#4—Ask Me Anything

Another way you can use the stories feature in Instagram to boost engagement is to post an “Ask Me Anything” session. 

This is a great way to invite direct interaction with your followers. When I have done these, I open it up to questions about anything and don’t just limit it to business. 

Getting into the more personal things humanizes you by showing the face behind the brand. And your transparency in answering the questions helps build trust with your followers. 

Always make sure to share the answers back with your entire audience rather than direct messaging your answer to the one who asked the question. Sometimes, people are hesitant to ask questions, and seeing others do it—and get responses from you—could provide just the encouragement they need. 

“Ask Me Anything” helps people get to know more about you personally and see you as the knowledgeable professional when answering questions about real estate, potentially helping you get new business. 

#5—Local Spotlights

Posting local spotlights on Instagram is the perfect way to showcase unique aspects of your community:

  • Have a local restaurant that you love and want to tell everyone about? 
  • Is there a local park that’s your favorite place for rest and relaxation? 
  • Maybe there’s some really neat history about your town that people don’t know about. 

Here’s your opportunity to do some storytelling! Grab some video of the location inside and out, and do a voice-over highlighting your favorite things about that place. 

By promoting local businesses, landmarks, events, or individuals, you show your followers you’re involved in and proud of your community. It also helps support local businesses by introducing potential new customers to their establishments. 

Being sure to tag the location of the business you’re promoting opens opportunities for collaboration with those businesses. 

Any time I do local spotlights and tag the business, they almost always share my post on their page, which just furthers my reach to new people. 

I love learning about new places, and I know others feel the same way, so using your local spotlights will inspire your followers to explore. 

Taking the time to comment and engage with other people and businesses on social media will always help you get more eyes on your profile and your content. 

But taking it a step further and posting specific content to get people talking, interacting and participating on your page is the best way to boost engagement and get you more future business.