When I was growing up, the only telephone in our house was a large rotary phone in the living room. It took forever to make a call by rotating the dial one digit at a time—especially when the phone number had lots of 7s, 8s, and 9s. But it got the job done and connected me to the people I needed to talk to. Today with my smartphone, I can check in with my family, order a pizza, and resupply my groceries in about the same time it would take to dial that old rotary phone.
Adding digital tools to your marketing mix is a bit like upgrading to a smartphone. If your goals include increasing membership, engagement, and non-dues revenues, it might be time to reshape your marketing with digital tactics. Innovative tools and technology can help you reach your objectives, often with a better ROI and less effort than traditional marketing methods.
Here are three tactics to consider.
Digital marketing offers infinite possibilities for precise audience targeting based on your marketing objectives as well as a range of audience characteristics—from job titles to special interests, demographics, user behaviors, and more.
Ads for brand goals: Facebook, for example, allows you to create ads for specific goals, including brand awareness, reach, traffic, engagement, conversions, and more. You can upload your existing email list to target your known audience or to create a lookalike audience with similar characteristics.
Lead ads: Some social media platforms, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, offer lead generation forms for easy lead captures. When a user clicks on your ad, for example to download a whitepaper you’re offering, they see a form that is automatically populated with their name and email address. They click “Submit” to receive your offer, and you receive their contact info.
Pixel code: Digital advertising also enables precise retargeting. By placing a snippet of code on your website, you can display your messages and offers in users’ social media feeds based on what they viewed on your site.
Once you’ve captured contact info through digital marketing, you can nurture your leads with automated email drip campaigns. Email automation is commonly used to welcome new customers or subscribers with a series of background information about your company. Other uses for email automation include event promotion, membership renewal reminders, or lapsed member campaigns.
Email automation helps you reach more people in a more personalized way than traditional one-off campaigns. It also takes some items off your to-do list by automatically generating messages based on user behaviors. Advanced analytics and reporting show you opens, clicks, and conversions so you can refine your messaging based on what resonates best with your base.
If your email list isn’t producing the results you need, or its performance has declined over time, your list might be out of date. Sending to an outdated email list can hurt your deliverability, return on investment, and online reputation. Consider having a professional service scrub it for nonexistent accounts and spam traps. If too much of your list is unusable, you might need to invest in prospecting efforts to build it back up.
Marketing automation software is an efficient way to manage your contacts, leads, social media, email communications, and the customer journey. It can help you segment your list, personalize messaging, schedule ongoing campaigns, and track results with real-time reporting. A recent study suggests that using marketing automation to nurture your prospects could result in a 451% increase in qualified leads. It works because it lets your members and prospects tell you what they need, when they need it.
Another benefit of marketing automation is that it offers detailed analytics and reporting capabilities. You can track your campaign performance over time to determine what works and what doesn’t. These valuable insights can help you improve performance going forward.
Efficient, personalized marketing
Reshaping your marketing doesn’t mean throwing out everything you’ve done in the past. A traditional marketing method such as direct mail might still have a place in your marketing mix. However, if you’re looking for an efficient way to provide personalized marketing that raises awareness, builds trust with your base, and drives conversions, you should seriously consider one or more of these digital solutions. A rotary phone still makes and receives calls to help you communicate, but a smart phone can do so much more.
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