If there's one thing we'll be reiterating on this site, it's this... in the world of social media, audience engagement is more important than the number of followers you have. Having a large number of followers is great. It can not only give you a potential built-in audience to speak directly to, but it can also improve your credibility and likelihood of gaining even more followers. However, a large number of followers doesn't mean much, if they're not interacting with you.
It could be because we're currently still in the early years of social media (think how long television has been around... how different is it now from the way it was in the 1940's? That's where we are all at in social media, at the moment), but we see so many established businesses strictly using their number of followers as a primary metric in their media kits, when in reality, they should be making sure they include what their actual recent engagement and reach is, too. That's their actual following. We hope and expect engagement and reach will be featured more and more prominently in media kits, as groups and businesses begin to understand the gravity of why they're so important. For example, if someone has 10,000 followers, and their posts are only being interacted with by dozens of people, to professionals in social media with years of experience, that doesn't reflect well on the quality of their posts, and it certainly doesn't reflect well on the quality of their social media presence. When approaching or being approached by another group or business to collaborate, feel free to tell them what your engagement and reach is, and be sure to ask them what theirs is. The more consistent the engagement and reach is, the better.
Certainly, focus on growing your base of followers, but pay equal, if not more attention to how many people are interacting with your posts, and how many people the posts are been seen by. These numbers might be vastly different than what your following is. This will mean so much more in the long run. There are social media accounts with more than a million followers, who only get several hundred reactions per post, sometimes much less. Then there are accounts with less than 100,000 followers, who are getting thousands and thousands of reactions per post, and those posts on accounts with less followers are actually being seen by more people. Which sort of presence would you like to have?
How do you get more engagement? By making posts with short, relevant, appealing content that your audience will have a reason to react to. Think about what you would want to see, and think about what your audience would want to see. Remarkable photos can go a long way, solid, short videos can, too. When your audience interacts with your posts more, those posts are in turn seen by more people. That's one of the beautiful things about social media!