What Does Engagement Mean for Your Audience?

Based on the results of our recent Demand Metric study on content’s impact on the buyer's journey, 41% of study participants report that their content doesn’t create enough opportunities for interaction or engagement.

Is it in fact their content that is the issue? Or, is the engagement opportunity in the hands of the audience?

We choose what we engage with. Whether it’s our current Netflix obsession, the adventures of an Instagram-famous pack of mini-pigs (690K followers and counting), or the latest industry insights from the Wall Street Journal, the content we engage with in a digital atmosphere is the content we’ve chosen to interact with on a personal level.

The content we pursue is the content that resonates—for different reasons. Pursuing entertainment? Enter Netflix or the millions of content creators on Instagram and YouTube. Looking for the latest trends, or education on a certain topic? Enter thought leadership pieces or podcasts geared specifically to your interests or professional goals.

There is no limit to the content we can engage with—aside from the number of hours in a day. The era of the 24-hour news cycle and the proximity of smartphones to our bedside tables has introduced a unifying struggle to marketers everywhere. It’s no longer a matter of driving engagement, but maintaining it through the content you create.

How to Boost Engagement

Referring back to the Demand Metric study, 40% of surveyed participants indicated that their content doesn’t create enough engagement. We know engagement is important, but how can we ensure we are reaching and resonating with our audience?

If you’re creating mostly static experiences, one way to consider boosting engagement is through the use of interactive content. In a study sponsored by ion, Content Marketing Institute reports that engagement is the top motivation for marketers using interactive content, with 87% agreeing that interactive content grabs the attention of the reader more effectively than static content.

The good news is that static experiences can be repurposed with the goal of increased engagement in mind. And if a static piece is already engaging your audience, imagine the continued results you could drive through adding interactive elements into the mix.

What does engagement look like with interactive content? It’s a dialogue that begins with a valuable offering (education on a topic, or a solution to a problem, for instance) and leads to a deeper understanding of (and interest in) your product or service.

“Hey! Data over here!” says a normal infographic in your feed. “How can we look at this data differently?” asks its interactive counterpart, creating a much clearer and more effective path to engagement.

Using Interactive Content to Drive Engagement

When using interactive content, there are several factors that can drive engagement:

1) Differentiation

Your content stands out in a crowd. Statistics from the Demand Metric report show that interactive content is more likely to be effective at differentiating from competitors. Interactive elements like quiz questions can capture a user’s attention right off the bat.

2) Social Sharing

Users are more compelled to share interactive content pieces that have engaged their interest, as opposed to a more passive piece they’ve scrolled past. Sixty-three percent of those surveyed by Demand Metric reported their interactive content being shared very frequently, while just 32% reported passive content being frequently shared.

3) Capturing and Recapturing Attention

Once you’ve built out your customer profile, you can leverage existing static content pieces to recapture and maintain audience interest. As stated by one of our customers in a TrustRadius review, interactive content created with ion is great for “anything that requires gaining and constantly recapturing audience attention. With each new interactive element you draw your audience back in, making them stay with you and be part of your content rather than checking out so quickly.”

Ready to start driving better engagement? Save the date for our upcoming “Better” Series webinar on 5/30, where we’ll dive into a great customer example of engagement with interactive content. In the meantime, check out last month’s featured webinar on Creating Better Content, and check out a demo of our interactive content platform.