The most popular Internet marketing strategy that exists in the world today is referred to as social media marketing. It consists of many different promotional variables such as; person to person marketing, video and brand marketing, use of online forums and discussions, content distribution and interaction within various Interest groups.
Social media Internet marketing strategy received its’ popularity as a result of the following factors:
- Social media involves using open communication between an organization and the clients who are interested in it.
- It allows for clients and individuals to publicly evaluate an organizations overall performance.
- Its’ impact can reach a global marketplace.
- It takes minimum effort or cost on the part of the organization to implement. In fact, the only thing that you need in order to implement it, is some social media knowledge.
- Many of its components can be done for free.
- The progress and result of the Internet marketing strategy can be measured or evaluated almost instantaneously.
It is the proverbial “paradise” for non profit organizations, yet there seems to be an unwillingness on the part of many non profit organizations to benefit from this type of low cost Internet marketing strategy. This is a huge error on the part of the organization because social media can and does help considerably.
Consequently, it also provides the agency with access to many free and valuable resources that they may in fact be missing out on benefiting from.
There are several reasons that may prevent non profit agencies from jumping on the Internet marketing strategy bandwagon and some of them may be legitimate.
Often agencies may feel that the Internet is an unsafe haven for its clients and many have little or knowledge of the true value of social media. In either case,the agency is not using its available online resources effectively.
You can implement social media in a safe and secure way if you do so with proper guidance and techniques. The misconception that the Internet is unsafe is based on fear of the unknown and improper use of tools and resources. The fact is, social media is becoming an integral part of our everyday lifestyle and agencies must begin to adopt this new lifestyle into its operations or risk being left behind.
In order to begin to have an effective Internet marketing strategy, an agency must first begin to use its on line resources more effectively.
Is it not common knowledge that the success of any agency depends on its ability to use all of its current resources effectively? The Internet is no exception to this rule.
So how does an agency begin to implement an effective Internet marketing strategy?
It begins with some knowledge and research on the part of the agency. You should and probably never would jump into a river or lake without first making sure it is safe to do so,the same principles apply here.
You must first secure your computer network system by implementing online safety procedures before proceeding to the next step. That means using security software and creating agency security procedures and protocols. For example; if your agency has a youth section you may want to deny access to programs such as online chat-rooms.
Once a secure base is created within the non profit agency, the rest is easy.
- The agency must decide how the Internet can best benefit its particular needs and set goals and objectives for what they wish to accomplish with the implementation of this new Internet marketing strategy.
- The agency should find people within the organization who have some knowledge in social media or at the very least the ability to comprehend it. The agency should encourage them to work towards developing an agency marketing plan. It is highly recommended that the agency use at least one professional social media manager to assist in developing this plan.
- The agency should begin to seek out online resources that offer free training and tools that will help guide them in the right direction to achieving this marketing plan. The use of a social media manager will be effective in this step because they will already have knowledge of these resources on hand, thus saving the agency valuable time and effort.
Once the agency has a clearer view of their own needs and resources, it is easier to begin to implement the Internet marketing strategy.
An example of a good online strategy involves creating a website or Facebook fan page where your clients can meet on a daily basis to discuss current issues that effect them. It should consist of various videos promoting your agency and its activities. Your agency should be actively involved in writing content and blogs for various online article and social media platforms.
To be most effective, your agency should have its’ very own WordPress or similar blog that will inform your clients of current events within the agency or any other information that you wish to share with them.
All of these factors combined create a basic or minimum recommended social media strategy. The goal of the strategy is to aid the non profit agency by spreading the word about the agency and promote its online popularity. This popularity can and does translate into a considerable amount of online donations and access to free resources from outside sources that your agency did not have prior access or use thereof.
Resources such as: free publicity, online donation collection from popular mobile applications like “fund it” and instant access to information and potential clients and volunteers.
You can implement social media on a small scale and it would literally involve only a few hours per week. This is a good starting point for many non profit organizations. Eventually, you may wish to create a bigger and more stable Internet marketing strategy that could involve possibly hiring a social media company to implement. It literally depends on each individual agencies goals and objectives.
Do not think you can hire a company to do this for your organization so you do not have to? Think again, the cost for a social media company to implement this type of Internet marketing strategy on behalf of your agency costs considerably less than what you have already budgeted for your marketing at the current moment. The more you know, the more you will be able to grow!