What’s strong? What’s weak? Is it in the eye of the beholder? I guess what I consider strong may not be the same as you but it’s all relative. And doesn’t it all comes down to your goals? Are they being met or not? From the outside looking in it might be difficult to gauge success of a social media strategy, but if you look at each of their platforms, you can see how engaging they are, and then determine how strong or weak they may be in their attempts.
I took a slight turn on this and started thinking outside the box a bit. Sure, large corporations tend to budget funds towards marketing, advertising and communications, and some may have their own social media manager in place. But what about the little guy or girl? How do they do social media? Ten to one, they don’t have the large budget to work with but somehow, they make do and with relatively good success.
Let’s take a look at one of the big fishes in the fitness industry first, Canfitpro.
Canfitpro was founded in 1993 by David Patchell-Evans, yes, the founder of Goodlife fitness, and provides a variety of fitness education opportunities in Canada. Not only do they provide courses and programs for the budding fitness professional, they offer continued education, certifications, conferences and trade shows for its members and the fitness industry. As a fitness professional myself, they have been my certifying agency for over 20 years. “Canfitpro’s over 24,000 members include some of the world’s finest fitness professionals, health club operators, industry suppliers, and fitness consumers.” (Source: https://canfitpro.com/about)
As a major corporation, not only do they subscribe to two of the most widely used social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter, but they also have a big presence on Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn. One of their greatest hits has been the promotion of their annual conferences which are held in major cities across the country. Although I didn’t attend this past Toronto show in August, I recall from previous years that there was always a camera around and people posting live updates on almost every aspect of the conference. And watching the feeds from this year’s World fitness expo was no different. Even during the event, there were thousands of posts by the organization requesting members to post their own experiences from the conference. There was a lot of engagement on their Twitter and Facebook pages.
Now gearing up for Vancouver on November 15, I’m sure they will be doing a similar strategy to engage the participants in attendance and show those not present, what’s happening on the east coast.
In addition to promoting events and educational opportunities, I also appreciated that they have really gotten the members engaged on their platforms. Every month they highlight one of the many members of their organization, which gets shared several times over on their Facebook page. Canfitpro knows its audience quite well and I feel they are doing a great job with their social media efforts.
Another organization that I feel hits the mark on social media is Thirty-One Gifts.
Empowering women to run their own business by giving them the tools and opportunities to do so, Thirty-One was created in 2003 and has been going strong ever since. An international business with consultants across North America, Thirty-One has become successful in its own right. Yes, it is a home party-based business for some and yes, you can certainly shop online for their products, but what struck me was the intimacy of their consultants’ business. What I mean to say is that the consultant creates a personal relationship with each and every customer. My consultant Jacquie, is an amazing woman. A d has made incredible strides in her business. Not only does she have a career in another industry, but she runs her Thirty-One business with amazing success using social media as a marketing tool. She started her business 4 years ago in Ontario and in that time has become a top salesperson in the company, winning numerous accolades for her work. Two years ago, she packed up and moved to Calgary for her career and Thirty-One blossomed that much more.
Creating her own Facebook group has given her the tools to market her business in a way don’t think traditional sales would have worked. Not only does she reach a lot of people, but reaches them across the country. From hosting live videos on product launches, contest giveaways, and just posting photos of new products to personally using the products she endorses, Jacquie and her Thirty-One business has made a great impact.
Nationally Thirty-One gifts have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest; which allows each consultant to use their photos and videos for their own pages. It’s great to see the ‘little guy’ succeed with little funds.
Although these are just two examples of strong social media campaigns, there are several other organizations that are just as effective. But what about those that are not? Or those that have quickly reacted to something and didn’t think ahead. We all remember the United Airlines debacle last year when a passenger was forcibly dragged from the plane because he refused to give up his seat when the airline had overbooked. Video of the event went viral and the CEO went on social media apologizing a few times, which didn’t go over very well. “United failed to show empathy with its paying customers and came across as uncaring, insincere, and brutal”
So much for flying the friendly skies.
Regardless of whether you consider your business as a strong or weak organization when it comes to social media, there are a few tips to consider when setting up any social media platform.
According to LYFE Marketing, if you follow their 10 easy tips, you’ll be taking your social media strategy to new heights. You can find more detail on these tips here.
- Identify Your Goals
- Identify Your Audience
- Select the Best Platforms
- Employ a Qualified Manager
- Deliver Consistently
- Woo Influence
- Grow Your Audience
- Engage Your Audience
- Measure your results
- Lather, rinse, repeat
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. That’s how we learn. But when dealing on social media, it can become quite daunting if you have a little blooper. Have you ever posted something that you regretted putting out there? Or tried to fix but it just made it worse? Tell me your social media blunders and how you fixed it.