Why Social Media Views are Pointless and Engagement is Gold.

Written by Richard Webster

Professional copywriter specialising in B2B copy and content for small businesses and solopreneurs.


Here’s a reworking of an old phrase for you,”Views for vanity, engagement for sanity.”

Most people have heard of that old phrase “Turnover for vanity, profit for sanity.” And it’s absolutely spot on. You can make as many sales as you like, but are you making any profit from them?

The same is true with Content Marketing. When companies first start posting blogs or social media posts, they tend to focus on the views, i.e. how many people have seen that post.

And it’s a stat that’s nice to know. You want the validation that your post is getting seen by as many people as possible. It gives you a warm, fluffy feeling inside.

But is that generating any real interest in your business? No. Different social media platforms calculate views differently.

For example, LinkedIn classes a view as any time your post appears in someone else’s feed. They may not have even read it and scrolled on by. Basically, it’s a largely irrelevant statistic.


Engagement is your target stat

The numbers you should be paying attention to are the engagement stats. Engagement is when someone has liked, commented, or shared your post.

And they increase in value in that order. Likes are good, comments are better, reshares or retweets are gold. All the social media platforms love reshares as they validate your post. If someone thinks your post is worth sharing to their network, the platform knows it has engagement and will rank it higher and push it to more feeds.

As a side note, when a platform has different options for liking (e.g. on LinkedIn you can choose like, celebrate, support, love, curious, insightful) there is evidence that picking one of the additional options instead of “like” carries some more value. The theory is that it takes a little more effort to choose another option so the post must be more worthy. I don’t know if it’s true or not, but worth bearing in mind the next time you want to like a post. Go the extra yard and pick another option.


How do you increase engagement?

Create interesting content. Write blogs that help your audience with a problem. Give them a “How-To” guide or a “Top three Tips post”. Share some data from your industry. Make an outrageous statement. Don’t just relentlessly post humblebrags about your business. The occasional one is fine, but your audience will value your help more than your success stories.

Focus on engagement and you’ll see the return on your investment.


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