What makes digital content engaging? It’s the posts that catch your eye as you scroll through your feed, and the posts that you rush to share with your followers. It’s the content that gains a reaction, and in some cases, achieves the holy grail of going viral.

All content should aim to educate, entertain and inform your audience and reach them on the platforms that they use the most. For social media posts to be engaging, brands need to create different types of content for each platform, linking them with shared values and a consistent message.

With 41% of Americans saying that it is important for a brand to have a strong social media presence, and 28% preferring to engage with a brand purely on social media, it is vital that content is both engaging and eye-catching.

With the emphasis placed on creating social media content that captures a fan’s attention, how can you go about fulfilling this objective?

Mix up what you’re producing: don’t just stick to a written blog post. Experiment with infographics, video updates or photo driven posts to really capture the attention of a follower.

Be reliable: manage follower expectation by providing updates at the same time. Use your content calendar to plot out when posts should be scheduled to go live and which platforms will run the post first.

Understand the role of SEO: use SEO focused words throughout your content not only to improve findability but to keep readers engaged. The words that appealed to them in the title and description have persuaded them to click on the post to find out more.

Respond to the needs of the audience: what types of content do your followers want to consume? Respond to their needs to find out more about what is on offer. For a behind the scenes look at the company, try live video or Q&As. For a further in depth informational post try using LinkedIn Pulse or Medium to share your expertise.

Think outside the box: utilize the best of interactive media such as GIFS, infographics and short video to engage customers. Test the novelty factor and don’t be afraid to experiment.

Provide valuable advice: ensure that you embrace the ‘value added’ approach with your content. Offer up a takeaway of something useful for your audience and something that will help solve a problem or make the customer’s life easier. For example, produce an ebook download or provide exclusive early access to a product or service- these two techniques can also provide you with valuable and clear information about the needs and interests of your audience.

Work with influencers: team up with digital influencers and social media stars to spread your message or latest update. Include them as guest bloggers or regular contributors for added power and visibility- and to boost your chances of shareability.

Trends and events: take advantage of current trends or upcoming events, creating and shaping content to maximize visibility. Use a content calendar to plot out which events tie in with your objectives and check out what if your competition has created similar content in years past. Don’t be afraid to think out of box, especially if you want to truly engage your followers!

What has been some of the most engaging social media content you’ve seen? Share your thoughts with us.