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Are you *really* reaching new people through your communications and marketing?

You’ve created your social media post, blog or other content. You’ve posted it on your website and social media and sent it out through your enews. You’ve had some engagement and so you’ll repeat it all again – job done. Or is it?

When I’m working with colleagues in music, arts and charities, I’ve spotted that there’s an important aspect of comms that’s often overlooked. And that’s expanding your networks by using communication channels other than your own. Reaching out as well as reaching in.

Of course, it’s only right that your existing followers and enews subscribers are your main priority. After all, they’ve shown that they’re interested in you, as well as a level of commitment

But if you’re only placing content in the channels you control, you may be diluting your impact. Eventually for some, their attention will wane, and they’ll engage less. Even if your community is active and supportive, it makes common sense to keep growing it.

What’s happened to the way we reach new people?

I’m almost hesitant to write this, as it sounds so obvious. You may well be thinking, “well of course that’s key to our communications approach”.

Perhaps it is, and perhaps this doesn’t apply to you..

Yet I think that most of us have become reliant on social media as the channel to provide this ‘reach’. We’re all obsessed with gaining engagement – particularly comments and shares. And reaching people on social media is only getting harder.

So it makes sense to check what ‘reach’ tactics you’re using, if any, outside of social media. And with a bit of creative thinking, I’ll bet that you/your team could come up with dozens of new ways to reach your ideal audiences.

What could you do to extend your reach?

Here are just a few suggestions to start you off:

  • do your research into other organisations/individuals that reach the people you want to reach. Think creatively. Where do your ideal customers/ funders/ partners/ supporters hang out, online and off? What events do they go to, what do they subscribe to, who do they follow online?
  • place items in other people’s enewsletters – you could offer a mutual info swap. This can be very effective and often easy to arrange
  • direct message other social media accounts to ask them to share a blog or social media post or other content/resources
  • aim for conversations on social media, not just broadcasts, including on other people’s channels
  • ask to be a guest on podcasts that are likely to be listened to by your ideal audience
  • arrange a joint campaign with another person/organisation
  • attend conferences, workshops and seminars

I’d love to hear from you if you have other ideas. What you think is obvious may not be to other people. What do you do to increase your reach?

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