“Extra! Extra! Read all about it!” While this call to action of yesteryear shouted by newsboys selling papers has grown silent in the digital media age, the concept of capturing your audience’s attention with a compelling message remains the same.
One effective tactic federal agencies are using to spread the word about programs and services for citizens are strategic digital outreach campaigns. With digital outreach campaigns, agency social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube are leveraged to promote available resources, tools and information that benefit a specific audience. In ENC’s case, we have developed several targeted campaigns for the U.S. Small Business Administration and can speak to some pretty exciting and measurable results. Our tried and tested approach to digital campaigns consists of the following key elements:
- A social media calendar—a strategically crafted schedule of Tweets and Facebook posts that highlight resources, tools, etc. as related to the campaign topic
- Creative assets—social media graphics, website banners or infographics to visually represent the campaign message
- Other campaign content—specialized blog posts, email bulletins or partner newsletter blurbs that serve as additional outlets for the campaign message
- Metrics—monitoring and results reporting on the effectiveness and reach of the effort with tools such as Google Analytics and Radian 6, a social media metrics service
For SBA, we’ve produced targeted campaigns focused on topics ranging from women-owned small businesses, to surety bonds, to government contracting and business planning tools. These topic-based campaigns have generally boosted traffic to promoted SBA.gov content by 15 percent.. The campaigns have also skyrocketed SBA’s viral reach (total potential online audience) for many topics. The veteran owned-business campaign fueled a 178-percent increase in online conversation about the topic And email bulletin opens with campaign-related content soared an average of 25 percent higher when compared to the standard, weekly bulletin.
Digital outreach campaigns are a great way to get the word out about what agencies have to offer. They provide focused attention on a given topic and return great results in the amount of exposure those topics receive. These campaigns help organizations communicate their value. So hang up your newsboy cap, and start tapping into digital campaigns.