Leadership Challenge Week Brings in New Set of Customers for BMD

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Ask and you shall receive engagement. That's what Business Management Daily accomplished last year with its Leadership Challenge Week Aug. 8-12 —winning a 2017 SIPAward for Best Social Media Initiative.

"This campaign was especially unique and different from the other social media marketing campaigns we've put together since we asked participants to complete tasks to help them strengthen their skills, instead of simply giving them free resources," wrote Jaclyn Baldovin, online content manager for BMD.

The campaign collected 955 new-to-file emails and significantly increased social media engagement. Many participants completed the leadership tasks using the #LeadershipChallengeWeek hashtag and thanked BMD for the free resources they offered.

Here are some keys to their success:

Create your own week and logo. Leadership Challenge Week fit squarely into BMD's verticals and resonated with their diverse audience. Similarly, the Association of Clinical Documentation and Improvement Specialists—part of BLR's HCPro—has achieved great success with CDI Week. Their seventh one takes place this September. For that group, the week "positively affects the personal and organizational performance of CDI specialists."

Give some lead-up time and encourage people to share. In the month before Leadership Challenge Week, people were asked to register for the event by submitting their email address on a landing page. Social media share buttons were included on the thank-you page—always make use of that thank-you page—so that people could encourage their colleagues and friends to participate.

Don't be afraid to ask people to do a little work, but be creative and make it fun.

  • On Monday, participants were asked to take the "Know Your Leaders" Tightrope eight-question quiz.
  • On Tuesday, they were encouraged to post their favorite leadership quote on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. (A couple examples: Vulnerability creates connectivity. You can make a throne from bayonets, but you can't sit on it very long.)
  • Wednesday it was to make one change to your office to give it a more professional image.
  • For Thursday, give your LinkedIn profile an upgrade by changing just one thing—we could all benefit from that.
  • And Friday they were given a hypothetical scenario of being in a leadership role and having to make a tough decision.

Provide something substantive. Free training resources were given away each day, and those were marketed a bit playfully as well: a Leader's Lingo Cheat Sheet; a Leader's Must-Do Adventure Menu; and the Great Speech Template; Turn Your Desk Into an Ad for Yourself.

Have a presence on the various social channels. BMD promoted the free training resources on their Facebook Business Page, Google+ Business Page, LinkedIn Groups, Pinterest and Twitter.

Post an article on your LinkedIn group page. The headline read, "We're Celebrating Leadership Challenge Week by Giving You Gifts." If you don't have a group page yet, check out Baldovin's recent session at SIPA Annual on LinkedIn Marketing.

Don't automatically eliminate any dates. You might have thought that August would be too quiet for this week to work. But obviously, BMD did their homework and knew that much of their audience would be around. May, June, September and October can be particularly busy for national days and weeks, so maybe August is fertile territory.

Don't get down on social media because it's not producing sales. Done right, it can lead to sales. "We [will] continue to track the [registration] emails for any new sales that come from them," Baldovin wrote. 955 is a significant number of possible new customers. Add their friends and connections and BMD has widened their base considerably.

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Ronn Levine began his career as a reporter for The Washington Post and has won numerous writing and publications awards since. Most recently, he spent 12 years at the Newspaper Association of America covering a variety of topics before joining SIPA in 2009 and SIIA in 2013 as editorial director…