When it comes to promoting your program, whether it includes awards, scholarships, grants, fellowships or even volunteer recruitment, it is critical to send the right message that will appeal to your specific target audience and ultimately promote your programs effectively. Here are nine ways to improve your program’s outreach with digital marketing:
1. Define your Goals.
Understanding your goals before your launch your marketing campaign is critical. You may want to grow your applicant pool with quality applicants or broaden the awareness of your program to a very defined and hard-to-reach audience. Understanding your objectives and then setting metrics for each of these goals will help you achieve your overall goals.
Metrics can include the number of visitors who came to your program’s landing page from email marketing or social media.
2. Understand your audience.
Demographics are important, but insights and personas can assist with providing a strong direction of where your organization should be reaching out to. Are your ideal applicants located in a hard-to-reach geographic location? Are there universities that have programs related to a specific topic and are happy to partner with you to promote your program?
3. Plan it out.
Have a well-defined strategy and content plan that addresses your audience’s interests and your goals. Appealing to the target audience with graphics and information that catches their attention is key.
4. Choose your marketing channels wisely.
There is a myriad of options when it comes to platforms and channels to engage with your target audience. These can include online advertising, social media, email marketing, partner link sharing, and even job boards. First, make sure that your target audience engages on that platform. Second, leverage audience targeting features that many platforms (but not all) offer. Take the time to analyze all your options and make the best choice for which one/ones are best for your outreach.
5. Be social!
Understand and incorporate your social media and communications policy while defining and executing your plan. For some businesses, less is more – that is, sometimes posting sparingly on social media is better than constant updates. Understand your customer base and what their preferences tend to be, and update your social media presence accordingly.
Don’t forget to leverage your program recipients and alumni who are on social media to share your posts. They are your best advocates!
6. Show-don’t tell.
Use pictures, videos, and text to facilitate conversation and sharing. Pair visual content with descriptive text that is short and simple. Especially if your system has complex directions, a small diagram to simplify instructions can go a long way.
7. Show off!
Be authentic – share expertise, promote key milestones, and demonstrate the value of your program. This way users and prospective users are aware of how great your program is and may be impressed by your achievements.
8. Evaluate and learn.
Track, measure, and adjust your efforts to ensure objectives are being achieved and goals are met. Create benchmarks and monitor progress. If deadlines aren’t being met or goals turn out to be unrealistic, this gives you a constant ability to assess and address any tweaks required to your marketing plan.
9. Engage the experts.
Digital marketing can be tricky and overwhelming. Engaging the right experts can assist immensely. This can include your marketing and communication teams. They may be able to assist with promotion.
There may also be specific policies in place that you are required to follow. If you don’t have access to this resource, then reach out to a digital marketing agency experienced in association marketing.
By following these simple steps you can ensure your marketing and outreach programs will reach their full potential.
At RhythmQ, we are experts in association marketing and can assist with your digital and traditional marketing requirements. Contact us and we’ll be happy to learn more about your program outreach needs!