Should an Organization Focus on Email Marketing Or Social Media?

Good Question? Social Media or Email Marketing Automation is a tough choice? Or, is it?

Social Media is more than just a buzzword. Certainly, personal users in the Social Media world have noticed the influx of businesses and organizations who have created a business account to interact with their customers. Businesses use Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and perhaps Instagram but compared to email marketing which platform is more effective?

Social Media has been used to create a community with customers, advertise promotions, and even promote giveaways. However, according to Andrew Paul from Email Answers, purchases made because of email marketing is now ranked at “7%.” Furthermore, goods and services acquired through email marketing has increased by fourfold. Compared to email marketing social channels trail considerably behind.

How to Benefit From These Statistics?

Have a Strategy for Mobile Email Marketing – Keep in mind that your email marketing needs to be formatted for cellular phones. About half of all customers check email on their “smartphone.” These facts are important because “65%” of those who use smartphones will opt out of your emails if there are “rendering issues or [your email] doesn’t look right on their mobile device.” It is imperative to ensure that all email messages sent to consumers will render correctly on all smartphones.

Continue to Do What Works –  Many companies want to be the “first” to try the latest and greatest “social website or new marketing strategy.” However, this can become problematic when you lose sight of established marketing practices like having:

  • Your website appear on the first or second page of search results
  • A well written blog that is updated frequently
  • A well proven email marketing plan

Is Using Social Media Effective At All? Let’s consider Coca-Cola’s Facebook account. Currently, Coke has over 50 million fans on Facebook, but how many of these followers receive one of their many status updates?  

How about 5%? If Coca-Cola wants to attempt to reach the other 95% of their Facebook fans, they will have to pay Facebook to do so…  This isn’t 2008 and the perceived ‘Like’ value isn’t what you think it is.  Likes are worthless, well almost worthless.

So, with that in mind should social media be thrown to the wayside at your small association? Of course not; just keep in mind there are more effective ways to market to your customers, and put your focus on those strategies first. Also, if you need assistance with finding the right private cloud or looking to explore an email marketing solution, please contact us.

Use Social Media Software to Make Membership Connections

Social MediaIs your association utilizing Public Social Media sites?  If not, your executives should at least consider the notion that most people today participate online via social media.

And, for the Millennial generation they’ve grown up with the offering. It’s a scary fact in the digital world today that your membership (potential and current) can collaborate with other like minded individuals with or without you.

If you’ve determined that your members are collaborating in Public Sites, perhaps you have begun to consider a Private Social Media Network for your community? If not, you likely should!

Private Social Media Software allows your organization to control the content and community. Your site becomes a member benefit!

With social media software, your membership can keep in touch with your organizations for events, causes, training courses using things like push notifications, twitter posts, and Facebook posts to keep in touch with existing members and build a bigger audience.

Quick Benefits of Using Social Media Software

  • Collaboration: Social media is just that – social.  Members share what they find and their friends can more easily find your organization. More importantly, their friends will remember to find you: the link to your site is usually right there on the post sent by a trusted friend.
  • Costs: A good social media campaign has fewer costs associated with it than, say, a direct mail campaign. In addition, most private social media software (like HigherLogic) includes built-in analytics pages to more easily help you track metrics.
  • Brand: As well as lower costs, practical results like brand visibility and interaction with your non-profit are often higher than the 5% conversion rate that non-profits usually enjoy for direct marketing.
  • Engagement: With private Social Media Software your organization can control and monitor the activity of your constituents allowing your executives to provide more of what your community wants.

How to Find the Right Social Media Platform for your Group

Twitter, Facebook, Forums, Imgur, Tumblr, and even the old MySpace…are public sites which your members may reside today. It’s imperative to bring your community into your office (your website).  The sheer number of private social media platforms available can be overwhelming. It’s important to think about the following questions when planning a move to private social media software.

  • Integration: Can you integrate the platform’s analytics easily with your AMS software? While you can get around this by entering things manually, you’ll want it to be as easy and seamless as possible to keep track of basic member profile information (name, address etc.), participation, orders & event information .
  • Activity Tracking: Does your target audience “hang out” on the platform you’re looking at? It’s harder to track on a Public Social Media Software platform. If you can’t determine engagement, as inexpensive as it may be, the cost won’t be worth the return.
  • Pictures are worth a 1000 Words: Does your audience and membership work primarily more in words or images? Even if they tend to think and respond well to words, if you choose a platform other than Twitter, consider including both in your offerings.

Many of our partner software solutions include ways to integrate social media with Public Sites, your metrics and even accounting processes.

Please Contact us today to see how we can help you better manage your membership’s needs with Private Social Media Software.