Dana Sullivan Kilroy is a communications professional with more than 20 years of experience delivering compelling content. Her work has appeared in national, award-winning publications and sites, including: The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Fast Company, Inc.
What are you doing -- right now -- to promote your new campaign? Remember back in the good old days -- like 2015 -- when you'd build a campaign and get hundreds or thousands of entries? Or when you'd share a blog post on Facebook and get a gazillion likes and shares? The idea that "If you build it, they will come” does not apply to campaigns (or posts) these days. What's going on? We think there are a couple of factors at play. First, there are more brands vying for attention now, meaning people are just overwhelmed by the sheer volume of content that's coming at them all day every day, and second, people have "social media fatigue. "The challenge for brands is finding ways to make your campaigns stand out in the crowd. We know seventy-five percent of what makes a campaign successful is what you do to promote it. That said, there are lots of ways to promote a campaign -- most of which don’t cost much because you’re making use of resources, like your website and social media channels, that you already have.The most important thing: consistency. To make sure you don’t forget all the little updates and improvements you can do to promote your campaign, we’ve created a handy 40-point checklist.Let’s dive into it.
DESIGN WITH SHARING IN MIND
First and foremost, if your campaign isn’t designed to be easy to share you’re limiting its potential. Here are a handful of features ShortStack offers that help promote the sharing and engagement of your campaign:
- Share Widget: Lets your users share your campaign on their various social media channels platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn
- Refer-a-friend: Enable a referral URL to be distributed to each participant. This will incentivize sharing by offering extra chances to win to those who are able to get referral entries.
- Points per field: Incentivizes people to fill out extra fields of a promotion form by awarding them more chances to win. Find this feature in the Form Designer.
- Voting Widget: Display entries submitted into an entry form in a gallery and let your campaign’s visitors vote and share each entry.
- Action Widget: Create "if this, then that" integrations between your widgets. You can use this feature to enable share prompts and/or display popups.
ShortStack's Earn Extra Points Giveaway template allows you to award entrants extra points for filling out more fields on your form View and Create Your Own
ADD FEATURES TO YOUR WEBSITE (OR BLOG)
Identify which of your online properties gets the most traffic and turn them into promotional assets for your campaign. Most brands, for instance, get most of their traffic on their website and/or blog. Add the following to drive traffic to your campaign’s hub:
- Website header notification bar (Hello Bar makes it easy to create one)
- Website sidebar displays ads
- Popup notifications; use embedding to display campaigns as popups
- Call-to-action footer images on blog posts
- A banner announcement on the main page of your website and/or blog
ShortStack's pop-up embed feature
UPDATE SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS
Beyond posting frequent status updates and posts about your campaign on your favorite social media networks, there are handful of small profile updates you can make to create awareness for your campaign:
- Update your brand’s Facebook cover photo and/or profile photo
- Update your Twitter header image
- Update your Twitter bio to include a link to your campaign
- Update your brand’s Instagram bio with a link to your campaign
- If you created a video to promote your campaign, provide the link in the video’s description box
*Use these same tips across all your social profiles throughout the duration of your campaign.
DO EMAIL MARKETING
Email conversion rates are three times higher than social media, with a 17 percent higher value in conversion, according to a report by McKinsey & Company. It’s also the channel on which the large majority (90%) of consumers would like to receive updates from brands, according to the Nielsen Norman Group. Use these email marketing efforts to let your customers and/or subscribers know about your campaign:
- Send an email blast to your subscribers notifying them of your campaign
- Include a footer or header image that promotes your campaign in your newsletter’s design
- Set up auto-responder emails so when a person shares with you their email address via your campaign, they are sent a confirmation message to their inbox (at the same time, you start building a list of leads)
Send autoresponders with ShortStack's Marketing Automation features
CREATE THE RIGHT KINDS OF CONTENT
Content can be used to create awareness for a campaign. Here are examples of content you can create and share to promote your campaign:
- Blog posts that support your campaign’s message
- eBooks, white papers and/or downloadable PDFs that support your campaign’s message
- Guest posts for a blogger who has an audience you want your campaign to reach
- Infographics that have a call to action on its footer -- like this one
- Graphic tutorials or how-to content
- Videos with calls to action to visit your campaign
If you have a budget to promote your campaign, there are many options for paid advertising. Here are the most popular options to consider first:
- Facebook advertisements
- Promoted tweets
- Youtube video ads
- Google Ads
- Retargeted display advertising
- Radio ads
- Television ads
- Magazine or newspaper print ads
- Billboard ads
- Brand sponsorships
- Pinterest-worthy images
* Pro Tip: Content (see point above) often resonates better with people than generic ads promoting a brand’s latest message. Test putting money behind content that promotes your campaign.
USE TRADITIONAL MEDIA EFFORTS
Traditional media efforts serve a larger purpose: To formally let the world (not just the internet) know about your campaign. Here are three ways to do that:
- Publish a press release
- Create in-store advertisements
- Host an event and integrate “social” into it. For example, you could create a special hashtag for the event.
LIST ON GIVEAWAY SITES
If your campaign is a giveaway, there is one effective way to promote it that not many people consider:
- Promote your campaign on giveaway listing sites.
We hope those ideas give you ideas for all the ways you can get the word out about your campaign. As always, our support team is always ready to offer advice on how you can make every campaign more successful. Don't hesitate to ask!
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