It’s every marketer’s worst nightmare: You plan the campaign, all the pieces are in place, then you launch and. . .no one shows up for your party. So what happens next? Do you tell your boss their invitations got lost in the mail? (Note: We do not recommend this approach.)
It’s time, unfortunately, to face some hard truths. But facing them does mean you’ll be better prepared for the next time.
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What do you know?
First things first: Did anything obviously go very wrong with the campaign that you can pinpoint immediately? The possibility of this happening is the reason it’s recommended to have a crisis communication plan on hand. If you don’t, now is the time to craft one for the future. If you need resources, here’s our advice for How to ensure you’re prepared for a social media crisis.
Maybe there wasn’t any one big glaring problem, but you suspect several little ones. The next section should help you tease out those issues and clarify what exactly went wrong.
What can you find out?
If you’re puzzled as to why the turnout was so low, start by asking yourself some questions:
- Was this campaign different from your last? It might have been too much like your last campaign or might have been way too different. You’ll have to do a little more digging to see if it was either of those things.
- How long ago was your last campaign? If they’re launched too close together, your audience could simply be suffering from fatigue. Give them some time to come back to you by being there for them, quietly.
- What was the timing of your posts? Were they too spread out for your audience, or maybe too close together?
- Did you tweak the wording across platforms? If you sent the exact same messaging and used the exact same images on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram that could also be a cause of audience fatigue
- Is your messaging way off? When is the last time you checked in on your content strategy? Have you just been plugging away using the same tactics without taking time to do some research (a content audit for your blog, across social and maybe also with your email marketing) and refreshing your strategy?
- Is your target audience way off? When’s the last time you checked in on your audience? Do you really understand them? If they’ve shifted, then you might be talking to the wrong people, so it’s no surprise they didn’t come to the party.
Your problem could also very easily be that you didn’t have a reliable measurement system in place before your campaign kicked off. After all, mid-campaign measurement is crucial for spotting when things start to go astray so you can redirect course accordingly.
In the future, be sure you pick analytics that work for your team and budget and have everything ready to go before your campaign kicks off. Of course we would love it if you chose Union Metrics, so take a look at our different plan levels that we offer and let us know if you’d like a demo.
How can you fix this for next time?
You’ve got a crisis communication plan in place in case of any big future disasters, but what else can you do to make sure you’re never solo at your own party again? We just touched on the importance of analytics in the last section; it’s possible to get them retroactively in some cases (Union Metrics Echo lets you search the entire Twitter archive, for example), but it’s often expensive and difficult to get the data that you need.
Be sure as you’re planning your next campaign that you’re current on who your audience is, where they spend their time and how they like to be communicated with in that space or those spaces. That goes a long way toward shaping your messaging. Analytics can help with timing.
The rest is up to you!
Featured image via Unsplash.