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Social Media Marketing 101: Back to The Basics for Associations

By having a better basic grasp of these three social media platforms, you’ll be able to formulate a strategy tailored to all of their strengths and eliminate any weaknesses.

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Having trouble reaching your members on social media? It may be time to go back to the basics to build up a better marketing strategy. Social media is a powerhouse of a tool for businesses and organizations everywhere. It’s a great way to get ahold of your target audience, whether they’re already consumers or not, and engage them on a much more personal level. It also gives you a brand new way to market that is both cost effective and efficient. What’s not to love?

Well, if you don’t have a great grasp on how social media marketing works, you may not realize the untapped potential that it holds. Your association may have tried to work out a social media marketing strategy, but without a proper base knowledge on how it should work, you might not get the expected results. So, it’s time to go back to the basics. We’re here to give you a little social media marketing 101 class.

This is a great lesson for associations struggling to keep up with social media, as well as those looking to refresh the skills they already have. No matter your level of expertise, you should always revisit basic lessons every now and again to keep yourself on the right track with social media engagement!


Let’s start with Twitter. With 280 characters to work with and a plethora of hashtags to consume, you have a lot to focus on if you want to reach members. What is Twitter’s vantage point that keeps it separate from all other social media platforms out there? It’s real-time connection. Twitter users thrive off of staying in the know with their favorite brands, companies, and organizations. They also look at Twitter as a source for updates and latest news from these brands as well. Twitter also focuses less on the individual person and more on the concept or idea packed into the content. This is great for organizations who want to push a specific idea or marketing campaign.

Your association can use Twitter to promote live updates and news about your association to members. Think about all of the things you would include in a newsletter; Could they be broken up into small, digestible content blurbs like Tweets? If so, you’ll have a great way to reach members in real-time.


Next, let’s talk about Facebook. As the powerhouse of social media content, you’ll need to know all that you can to make the most of having a presence on this platform. Facebook can be used to host many types of different content. You can post photos, videos, text posts, updates, calendar events, and more. But the real gem of using Facebook as a social media marketing tool comes from its use of live video streaming to reach and engage with users.

If you can get a good amount of individuals engaging with the video and livestream content you put out, you’ll have a good idea of who on Facebook is really interested in what your association has to offer. You can then use that audience demographic in your Facebook Ad campaign, or even create a lookalike audience in Facebook Ads that mirrors that audience. And we don’t want to forget about the power of Facebook Groups.

Facebook Groups allow organizations to gather their target audience, consumers and non-consumers, together to communicate and collaborate over the shared interest of the brand. Creating and running a Facebook Group for your members can help you use social media to engage, and do it the right way.


While Instagram is owned by Facebook, it should not be approached the same way as you would for Facebook content marketing. Instagram is a social media entity all its own, and therefore it deserves its own game plan. Instagram works entirely on visual content. It’s a field day for those that love to put together an aesthetically pleasing graphic campaign, from photos to videos and even mixed media design.

Instagram allows you to be creative with your marketing campaigns. You can show your audiences as much or as little as you’d like, from event setup, to staff and office photos, to fully designed graphics to promote your latest news. There’s no limit to how you express your association’s brand on Instagram, so think imaginatively.

By having a better basic grasp of these three social media platforms, you’ll be able to formulate a strategy tailored to all of their strengths and eliminate any weaknesses. Try revisiting your association’s current social media strategy and see where you can improve.