Guest post by SocialFish contributor Amanda Kaiser.
Have you ever thought about all the goals your association has and how Twitter can help you achieve those goals? For many, the association Twitter account is treated like just another promotional channel. We push out messages like, “come to our event, read our article, volunteer for this committee, join us at the 6PM reception”. While all of these things are important for our members to know perhaps pushing all of the time is not so engaging.
Instead of just pushing messages through Twitter here are some other ways to use this social media channel that may help you serve your members.
Watch key industry hashtags and look for often talked about challenges and goals. Pay attention to active conversations on a new topic, these can alert you to potential trends. Scan competitor’s tweets to get a sense of their actions, plans and worldview. Watch key influencers and learn more about the industry. Initiate conversations on different topics to see what is of interest.
Build relationships with members, vendors and industry influencers. Make it easy for those who can’t participate in physical events to be connected virtually. Inquire about guest author and speaking opportunities from others in the industry with a following. Attend chats and answer questions so other tweeters can see there’s a real person behind the account.
Use your feed to highlight member’s awards, member milestones and great work done by members. Discuss industry wins, innovation and breakthroughs. Thank corporate members and vendors for their contribution. Are there ways you can be a little bit fun and maybe silly (in a good way) with this?
Curate and catalyze great ideas within the industry for the good of the membership. Highlight ideas from outside the industry and show how they apply. Demonstrate why the industry matters and why the work members are doing matters. Show progress toward industry goals. Reinforce a vision for the membership; what do you want them to be? Teach members how to effectively use Twitter by modeling best practices.
Distribute content. Gain awareness for association business activities, volunteer opportunities and advocacy. Sell conferences, membership and products. Encourage attendance in conference sessions, receptions and the at expo hall.
With all these ways to use Twitter why is “promote” the default for most associations?
Amanda Kaiser helps associations stay relevant by deeply understanding member challenges, needs and wants. You can find more of her articles about member research, member experience and member insights at www.SmoothThePath.net.