Interesting. We’ve received all types of advice on how we should refine some of our “marketing” strategies in order to improve our social connections and engage our audience more. There was a time when someone reached out and told us that he didn’t like seeing pictures of cards and that he would prefer to see more pictures of children with those cards. There was a brief conversation about our promise on posting a picture of each set of cards we get on at least one of our social sites so our artists can see that we got them and (let’s not forget) the Hippo named HIPAA, but that didn’t go over that well.
There was another conversation about how true social influencers on Instagram don’t include all their hashtags in the same posts as their picture. So, they do the main post with just the text and picture, and then comment on that original post with all the hashtags. With that in place, they get all the hashtags to attract people, but still look more professional/influential because when people read the text, they don’t see all the hashtags. Interesting. Makes sense.
Then there were other details we heard about. Like how you have to reply to people’s comments within a certain amount of time or the social sites will rank you lower. Or consistently modifying the type of content that’s used to keep people engaged. And then there were even more tips for paid ads.
Although all of those are likely 100% correct, it’s not exactly what we’re looking for. We’d love to find ways to attract more people who are Socially Active and expand our reach, but unfortunately, we’re not able to do that right now. We’ve had a couple of different companies reach out to us and tell us how they could run our social media, and with their tactics they’d be able to GUARANTEE that we get more followers and likes. There’d just be a small fee. Sorry. Thanks, but no thanks.
We’re not strictly trying to get more likes/fans to our pages. We’re trying to efficiently thank people who are actively making cards and potentially connect with new kids and/or organizations who could use some encouragement.
We intentionally used different types of script for that sentence so we can break it down a bit better! 😊
Efficiently – We try to highlight that we don’t have employees here at Cardz for Kidz! and that everything is done on a volunteer basis. We’re extremely thankful to have connected with Omeed and that he’s joined the board since he’s a pro at web design and Google Analytics. And right when we’re putting up our new site! Thanks to the volunteer work, we’ve been able to dedicate many of our donations to directly rewarding kids and seniors, rather than overhead cost. Looking into last quarter, 86% of our expenses were directly involved in helping kids. If you removed the costs for purchasing food for attendees at our fundraiser, it’d be over 90%. Other costs go to things like website hosting fees and Secretary of State fees. Since we made the new promise to purchase the new portable video game systems for our partner locations we’re watching our costs in all places, therefore we’re not trying to pay someone to run our social media full time.
Thank people who are actively making cards. With this we’re sticking to our promise and doing our best to show all the cards that we’re receiving and updating you on where we’re sending them.
Since this is something that everyone is doing behind the scenes, we’ve been unable to send letters/emails to let everyone know we’ve received their cards. Therefore, we use our social media as a 2-for-1. People can get ideas for what they can use for their upcoming cards AND people can view the pages and/or get notifications when we’ve received their cards. A win-win.
Connect with new kids and/or organizations. If you’ve followed our blogs, you know the rules. We always must be 100% open and honest. Originally, we started off making some of the special deliveries to kids on Instagram via hashtags since that was a way, we could connect with kids directly and potentially get some pictures. We didn’t have to worry about long legal forms – just confirmation from families due to HIPAA (#intheroom). Now based on the stories and what we’ve experienced over the years, we’ll consistently make these special deliveries and remind these kids that they were/are Very Important Patients/People (VIPs). We’ll continue to use our social sites to connect with new families who are going through trials and need some encouragement. Then we’ve gone through some lucky times where we’ve been able to spark some connections with other organizations and started sending cards to them (e.g. Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation West).
We know now it’d be better to use those new strategies, but for the near future we’re going to continue to have all volunteers behind the scenes – at least until we get to the A in our Order of Operations, PEMDAS. Therefore, we’ll keep using some backend software and schedule social posts a week before. We may miss a reply on our social posts or we may forget a crucial hashtag, and we’ll definitely not follow all of the critical social guidelines in how to run an optimal social marketing strategy, but we will continue to work WITHIN THE LIMITS of our current capacity to make sure we’re bringing more smiles to children, seniors, veterans, and artists. Thanks for your patience!
To see more pictures and stories, please check out our other tabs on our website www.cardzforkidz.org; like us on Facebook; follow us on Twitter and Instagram; visit LinkedIn page! Also, check out some of our videos on YouTube!