Outreach to older Americans through social media might have once seemed a bit like trying to create an oasis in a desert: a great deal of effort lost in the sand. Buthas demonstrated how use of social media has become an important part of the lives of millions of seniors. Which means numerous businesses that target seniors and their families have begun to develop strategies to reach out to those ever-growing constituencies and markets.
The folks at Glynn Devins Marketing have shared a keynote address that traces a case study they did with a local (Kansas) retirement community demonstrating the success of a drive on Facebook to increase ‘Likes’ and to offer donations as ever more people share their contact with that retirement community.
The common-sense approach to developing a social-media strategy is to build it along the lines of what has worked with traditional outreach (mail, email, face-time at conferences and trade shows…). That same common sense reminds us that we can not expect to see a mathematical forumla predicting return on investment. Nevertheless, some serious attention to (mostly free) analytical tools offers opportunity to see what is working.
The takeaway of the presentation reminds us that social networking is about relationships and building trust – and your strategy should be a mix of long-term outreach and briefer enticements to get involved:
Every organization will have a different way of using social media, but you won’t know what it’s doing for you until you begin to measure and analyze. Remember that with social media, you’re building relationships. You’re asking others to “like or follow” you because you can offer something of value to them. Allow them to be part of the conversation. Ask questions or seek opinions that will entice someone to make a comment. They’ll ultimately be your brand advocates and bring the value to your organization or community that will hopefully mean somebody saying, “Yes, I want to live there or I want my loved one to live there.”
And as the case study in the presentation demonstrates, the cost to garner almost 200 new Facebook Friends was a mere $27 per follower – offering a stunning ROI if even just one or two become part of the retirement community.