Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Content Marketing Builds Associations 4 Ways

Managing Content Marketing, the relatively new book from Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose, offers valuable information for associations and nonprofits interested in connecting with their members and prospects.

If you’ve been reading SCDdaily, you know that I strongly believe content management and content marketing are core functions of associations and nonprofits. You may call it education or publications or something similar but it all refers to the content that we create (whether in journals, conferences or the like).

While the book is written mostly for business-2-business markers, it offers great insight for associations and nonprofits.
Every piece of content should support a measurable marketing objective.

Think about content marketing from the association (or nonprofit) point of view.

Is it to enhance brand awareness? Recruit members or donors? Establish the organization as a thought leader in our profession/industry? Add value to joining? Develop loyalty that enhances retention?

Content marketing can be linked to four core areas of most associations
Your existing content efforts (including social media activities) should be assigned to measurable marketing objectives:

1) Membership recruitment and retention
  •  Number of inquiries about membership
  •  Total number of new members
  •  Member retention rates 
  •  Number of fans/followers on your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest pages

2) Conferences/Educational Sessions
  • Year over year attendance
  • Number (or percentage) “connections” to the conference registration page on the website

3) Reputation/Thought Leadership
  • Number of people and/or media citing (linking, retweeting, posting, etc.) of your position papers
  • Media coverage based on your content marketing: blogs, tweets, news releases, etc.
4) Advocacy
  • Number of connections (letters, emails) about your issue
  • Successful passage (or defeat) of legislation
  • Number of people “registered” on your advocacy page and/or number who have given you permission to be on a text message alert system
I’m sure you can add to this list ... including both your core areas and the metrics.

The key, as the book notes, is to develop measurable marketing objectives for each element of your content and be sure the objectives link to the association’s core mission and objectives.

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