By now, most successful business owners understand the importance of using social media to create brand awareness and engage with their audience. But simply posting on various platforms isn’t enough to capture - and keep - your audience’s attention.

Success in social media relies on solid content that encourages or compels your audience to act, whether that action is responding to a question, sharing your link with friends, or purchasing your services.

The following tips will help you identify a sound strategy and increase the chances promoting audience engagement.

1. Post the right content. Before you start posting, take the time to identify what content is currently resonating with your audience. You can do this by watching what your competition is doing or using one of the many available tools that help brands identify relevant content to share.

2. Post when your audience is listening. No matter how much time you put into your social media plan, you’re not going to get any type of engagement if your audience isn’t listening. Find out when and where your audience is most active, and post when you have their attention.

3. Start a conversation. Success in social media also depends on maintaining an ongoing conversation with your audience. You should use your various media channels to speak with your audience, not at them. Post content that encourages them to respond and join in on the conversation.

4. Include a call to action. What do you want your audience to do? Do you want them to answer the question you presented in your post? Are you trying to get them to share information with their friends and followers? Identify how you want your audience to act, and then tell them how to do it.

5. Proofread. Revise. Proofread. Many business take social media’s informality as a cue that they don’t need to put as much effort into their writing. This is a big mistake. Your posts represent your brand’s voice, and if you don’t take the time to put together well-written and thoughtful posts, you run the risk of appearing lazy, unreliable, or uneducated.

While there is no specific blueprint for social media success, following these steps will improve your chances of engaging and growing your audience. Remember, what works today might not work tomorrow, so if what you’re doing now isn’t working, resist the urge to throw in the towel and, instead, tweak your strategy until you land on something that works.