Monday, 31 January 2011

Social Media for Member Retention - Strategy tip #1, Listening

Thanks for the e-mails, comments and re-tweets on the Social Media for Retention article here and in Workout Magazine. As mentioned, the golden rule of social media engagement is to plan before you start, rather than jumping in and making it up as you go along.

Since planning and strategy is where a lot of clubs struggle, we want to give you a few pointers, firstly with listening, and secondly on how to identify influencers.

Listening is an important starting point, because it will help to define your strategy, and to find out more about the channels you need to be active on. Most of the tools are free, but you will need to make time to listen. Either assign (or employ) someone to do this, or set some time aside in your work week to do this regularly.

Start with a list of key words, phrases, and brands that you want to listen for. Consider information that would be useful to you to share, comment on, or just hear about. Think about your business, your customers, your partners, suppliers and your competitors.

Now check out some of the tools that you can use to listen to the web. It’s no surprise that Google is a good place to start, particularly Google Reader and Google Alerts. Alerts can be sent to your e-mail, but we use Alerts to listen out for key phrases, and then forward to a feed on Reader which can be reviewed when we’re ready.

There is a plethora of other listening tools; we like howsociable, socialmention, and netvibes to name but a few.

Please comment below if you find this article helpful, or if you find other tools or techniques useful.

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