Word of mouth is crucial to spreading the reach and effectiveness of your association or non-profit. People are a lot more likely to become a member or give to a cause, and realize the potential benefits, when someone they trust tells them about the positive experience they’ve had with organization X, Y or Z.
If your organization has a board of directors and/or committees made up of members, they are probably your biggest supporters and the best source for word of mouth marketing. These are some of the most involved people in your organization who want to see its goals and mission achieved. Many are also well-respected and well-known in their industries; people that others will listen to and trust when they say that investing in an association or a non-profit is worthwhile.
Social media can help your committee and board members spread the word. Social media is word of mouth made easy. Your members, sponsors, volunteers and donors can tell hundreds of their colleagues and friends something great about your organization with one minute and one click. Twitter, blogs, Facebook, Instagram; you name any platform and your members are on it.
Here are five platforms your board and committee members can be included in when planning your social media strategy and letting others know about the good your organization is doing.
Twitter is a great platform for committee or board members to get involved with when trying to engage others. By sharing the news, achievements, goals, benefits and the personal side of your organization with their networks, your content could reach thousands more people that may have an interest in joining the association or non-profit.
One way to get the best out of this scenario is to engage the committee or board members directly. Ask them questions, retweet their content and get them involved in twitter chats, which are open and ongoing conversations on twitter about certain topics, usually grouped by a hashtag (ex. #assnchat = association chat).
Twitter chats are a great way for your committee or board members to invite others into the conversation, introduce them to the world of your organization and provide them with information about the organization. Twitter chats open the door to conversations that, before, would only happen at industry events, small gatherings or meetings. Chats get those who might not be aware of your organization involved.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again; photos are one of the most powerful forms of communication. They convey messages that words sometimes cannot. That is why Instagram is a great tool in a board or committee member’s kit.
Instagram comes in handy at conferences, seminars, initiatives and other events. You can’t be everywhere at once and it is likely that you will miss an inspiring moment or an instant that captures the character of your organization. So it is great when your organization’s members are there to help out. Taking pictures of their experiences gives a unique perspective and tells a story, whether it be funny, moving or informative, that shows their network that the event, and the organization, is worth investing part in.
Odds are your organization’s committee and board members have at least some experience in the industry. This means that they know others in the industry. LinkedIn is the perfect place for professions in the same industry to connect and share ideas, advice and thoughts. Creating LinkedIn groups, posting discussions and having your committee or board members invite others and moderate the discussion alongside yourself is a great way of showing others how beneficial it would be to join your organization in some capacity.
The most direct way for your organization’s committee or board members to spread the word about your non-profit or association is to tell others what they like best about the organization and why they are a part of it. YouTube is a great way for them to tell this to not just one person, but to hundreds or thousands.
A simple video that has committee or board members saying, in their own words, why the organization is great and why they are involved does a few crucial things. It puts a human face to an organization, it puts a more personal spin on the goals and benefits of the organization (rather than an oft-repeated and formal mission statement) and it comes from a well-respected member with intimate knowledge of the organization. People will appreciate this information and feel connected with your non-profit or association right away.
Blogs allow your organization to go more in-depth on issues and tell colourful and interesting stories. Just like YouTube, it can be a great platform for your committee or board members to tell their stories and explain their reasons for getting involved in the organization. Some amazing tales can come out this opportunity, tales that could inspire others to get involved as well.
Blogs can also generate discussion and feedback, something the board or committee members can engage with and take back to meetings to help the organization grow.
Your board and committee members are integral parts of your organization. They devote time, money and ideas to your non-profit and association and they do it because they believe in what it is working for or towards. Let this belief shine through to others with social media and the results could be astoundingly positive.