Inbound marketing has entered into the world of social action by offering a powerful platform for any collective group to unite and share. At the core of social action is the relaying of knowledge and because of this, any initiative will benefit by incorporating an inbound marketing strategy into your campaign plans.
Before diving in, here are a few easy pre-launch tips you can use to aid in the success of your campaign:
With a plethora of social media platforms to chose from, it may be hard to know where to begin. Think about how and where you are going to reach your target market. Don’t expect them to find you – you have to go where they are. The platforms you participate on should make it as easy as possible for others to share your content. Also consider what assets you already have that may be valuable to your success. Do you have a contact list to use for e-mail notifications? What is your campaign message? What kind of content do you have to share and where are you going to share it?
Creating a marketing schedule for the campaign will keep the milestones and events organized. Layout the campaign’s social media activities, blog schedule, email campaigns, releases of advanced content, rallies, public speaking engagements and any other events that affect the campaign. Set realistic goals along the way to measure if you are on-track in reaching the end goals. Get your ducks in a row before launching the campaign.
When introducing a new initiative, providing educational materials can be instrumental in its success. Keep in mind that not everyone is as versed and knowledgeable about it as you are, so make sure the basics are included. Don’t assume people know what your campaign is about. Creating advanced content may seem like a daunting task, but it can be easier than you think. More than likely, you and your fellow campaign workers are excellent sources of knowledge, so begin internally. Extract statistics, facts, history and other trivia about the campaign to create downloadable content.
When it comes to social action, you need to give a "face" to the campaign. Do not underestimate the power of videos and photos. They are easy to share across platforms and can aid in fostering an emotional connection to a cause that might have seemed distant otherwise. Consider 2011's BP oil spill on the Gulf Coast; what may have seemed like an unfortunate disaster somewhere far away could become a personal experience after the photos and videos of oil-covered animals and contaminated beaches started surfacing. By giving your campaign a face, you can give your campaign life.
Most importantly, determine what it is you want people to do. Are you collecting signatures for a petition? Do you want volunteers to sign-up? Is this a fundraising campaign looking for donations? Or do you just want them to download your content and learn about your cause? Determine what your end goal is and how you are going to measure success. Your actionable items should be as clear and concise as possible—making it easy for people to act upon. Consider including simple 1-2-3 instructions to guide them through the process.
Throughout the campaign, follow up with your supporters regularly. Let them know where their efforts, signatures or donations are going. Keep them engaged with your initiative via social media and other outlets, updating them often on the status and results. Thank them for their efforts and ask them to spread the word. Making them feel like they are a vital part of the success encourages loyalty and improves your chances of continued support if you need it in the future.
Whatever your cause or initiative may be, having a plan and creating a marketing schedule should be your first step in getting organized. By creating great advanced content, you are giving a face to your campaign and providing something to share. Be very clear in what you want from people and make it as easy as you can for them. These simple tips will give your inbound marketing strategy and social action campaign a great place to start.