When I meet with prospective membership marketing clients, I have a laundry list of questions that help me get acquainted with the organization’s current marketing plan and initiatives. There are always a few questions about social media. Quite often, the conversation goes a little like this:
Me: Are you active on social media?
Potential Client: We have a Facebook page.
Me: And who is in charge of posting to your Facebook page?
Potential Client: Well, we don’t really have anyone in charge of that.
Me: Well, tell me a little bit about how your Facebook page came to be and the kind of content you do post.
Potential Client: I’m not sure who started it. We don’t post regularly. It doesn’t really seem to be working for us.
If this sounds anything like your organization’s current status when it comes to social media–Facebook in particular–this post is for you.
Starting a Facebook page isn’t going to automatically change the perception of your brand or garner myriad of followers. It takes work. Setting up a Facebook page (or any other social media profile, for that matter) is like opening a bank account. Money doesn’t just magically appear in your account; you need to do something to generate income.
Think about your bank account: You set up your account with all of the pertinent information. Your name, your address, your phone number. You even put an initial deposit into your new account. Excellent. Time to watch your money grow.
In order for you to get a pretty good return on your investment (and I’m talking a simple savings account here…nothing crazy or I’d be working in another industry) you need to continue to put in a decent amount on a regular basis–and slowly but surely, your money will increase.
The same is true when it comes to using Facebook, or any social media platform, in conjunction with your membership marketing. A successful membership marketing campaign that utilizes social media takes time and investment. You need to dedicate resources in order to make it work.
Before jumping into social media as part of your membership marketing strategy, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who are you trying to reach?
- What are your measurable goals as related to your business plan?
- What is the best platform(s) to reach your target audience and your goals?
- How can you utilize social media, in collaboration with other marketing tactics, to reach these goals?
You may not have the answers to these questions right away. That’s where research and online listening come into play. Take time to develop concrete answers to the four questions above and then develop your social media strategy. Don’t get hung up on the amount of followers you have within your social media platforms. If your only goal is to increase the number of fans or followers, you’re playing by the wrong rules. So what if you have 600 people who like you on Facebook? What are you doing with them? Are they engaged in your content? Are you even producing content? Did they all come from a contest or other blitz to garner more fans (and in reality, don’t really care about your organization)?
According to Facebook, the average user is connected to 80 pages, groups and events. Even if you gain their support on your organization’s Facebook page, how are you going to wow them? How will you keep them involved? What do you want them to do after they get there?
How will you move forward to make sure your membership marketing strategy does put money in the bank?