Digital Strategist for the North American Division.
A Case Study in Equipping & Empowering Social Media Ambassadors
Most of time, events don’t happen in a silo but rather involve several partners. I have found time and time again that active social media partnerships are a key element in successfully promoting events on social media. If you reach out to 10 contacts who each have a “small” social media following of 1,000 people, your message suddenly has the potential to reach up to 10,000 people online. Reach out to more contacts, with bigger fan bases, and you can see how your reach can grow exponentially.
Communicators typically have a lot on their plates, and social media manager is just one of many hats that they wear throughout the work week. Contacts are often willing to promote partner events through their various digital channels, but time and resources are limited. With this reality in mind, providing your partners with a “promotions packet” is an effective and easy way to equip your contacts with the resources they need to easily become social media ambassadors and share your message.
Normally, when marketers reach out to contacts and ask for promotion on their behalf, there is an assumption that the partner is responsible for writing the posts and generating the content. As a result, most requests are not prioritized and do not realize their full potential. A promotions packet, on the other hand, provides recommendations, pre-made social media posts, eNewsletter blurbs, tracking links, graphics, and more. Then the social media manager only needs to copy, paste, and schedule. They can of course modify the message for their audience if desired or necessary, but they no longer have the burden of generating everything on their own. This approach also has the added benefit of allowing you to control the quality and consistency of your brand’s message as it is distributed through your partner’s channels.
Our recent campaign for the pilot episode of “Is This Thing On?” is a prime example of how a promotions packet can be utilized to magnify reach online to targeted audiences. Is This Thing On? is a new series that aims to connect Adventist young people with church leadership to discuss relevant topics via a live interactive social media experience. With just three weeks to promote the first episode held at Union College, we utilized digital communications and partners to help us reach our targeted audience (Adventist young people). Along with a traditional press release that was sent to all the schools, conferences, unions, Adventist media, and partners, we included a promotions packet of pre-made social media posts with our branded hashtag #NADnow.
Because we provided a promotions packet as a resource, our contacts felt empowered to promote the event to their followers, and awareness for the event quickly spread, helping us reach more of our target audience.
Below are select examples of contacts who made use of this promotions packet. As you can see, some posted the provided posts; others modified the messages to suit their audience. Either way, these partnerships generated increased awareness of the event. If we add up the followers of these seven examples (we had many more than seven social media ambassadors across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and email), there is a combined potential reach of over 16,700 followers on Twitter, which is more than the current total Twitter account followers of @NADadventist alone (15,800).
The #NADnow hashtag gives us the ability to find related posts, and we can also track traffic to the website through Google Analytics tracking codes. The goo.gl link provided in the promotions packet social media posts allowed us to record the number of visitors to the website and discover where they heard about “Is This Thing On?”.
Full link: https://www.ittoshow.com/?&utm_campaign=PP-NADnow-UnionCollege-2017&utm_source=Social-Media
To create your own trackable link, simply add ‘?&utm_campaign=PP-NAME-of-Campaign-Date&utm_source=Social-Media’ to the end of your destination url and update the the campaign name and source to reflect your event by simply editing the text (no fancy software or applications needed). I used ‘PP’ in the campaign name to indicate that the link is from the promotions packet. Then shorten the link.
To learn more: URL Shorteners: How & Why to Shorten Your Links.
To view the data: go into your Google Analytics account for your website, choose “Acquisition” from the left-hand menu, expand campaigns, then choose “All Campaigns.” You should be able to see your various campaign names and sort by source if desired. If you do not have your website connected to Google Analytics, I highly recommend that you do. It’s free, and it can help you make strategic decisions. Learn how>>
For the #NADnow campaign, the promotions packet resulted in 265 visits to the website, in addition to the already expanded reach across multiple social media platforms.
Now this is just one aspect of a multi-channel, multi-platform campaign that works together for one unified goal. I strongly encourage you to create your own promotions packets and develop digital partnerships to help expand your reach in future campaigns. Plus, in a world of limited budgets, it only costs you time and effort.
Download the #NADnow promotions packet to use a template for you own campaigns.
One last important note: make sure that when you reach out for help with promoting your events, you are not only willing to reciprocate, but able to follow through with such agreements. Partnerships should be mutually beneficial, and trust can be built and cultivated over time when both parties follow through on their promises.
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