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Digital Marketing for Parks and Recreation

Parks and recreation marketing encompasses a wide range advertising activities, many of which are now revolving around digital technologies. These focus on brand awareness and increasing sales. With non-digital marketing decreasing in its efficacy, optimizing your digital marketing strategy is the best way to keep your parks and recreation organization at the forefront of your community’s mind. Here is our breakdown to be on top of your parks and recreation marketing in the digital age.

 

Social Media Marketing

This is one of the biggest opportunities brands have at the moment. Much of the brand awareness that can be boosted via social media is free, with the exception of Facebook ads and sponsored posts. There are lots of things you can do to create buzz. First, find the most relevant social networks for your location and target audience. For many, the top 3 will be Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, but you’ll have to do some research to make sure that is the case for you. Have a younger audience? You may want to incorporate Snapchat. Looking for more professionals of an older demographic? LinkedIn might be right up your alley, when deciding on your parks and recreation marketing channels.

 

Parks and recreation organizations have a huge advantage in this category. Many people are going to be visiting parks without having to pay to be there and almost everyone is armed with cellphones with cameras. That’s a lot of people who have the ability to share their experiences with your facilities and parks on social media. With social media marketing becoming increasingly visual, check out this past blog post on using photos on social media. This user-generated content is an excellent way to increase your marketing options.

 

Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization helps potential users find your brand a lot easier when searching. This is important for many reasons. Of course it’s pretty easy to be found when someone Googles your company name. But how often do you come up when they’re searching for related search terms that don’t include your company. Say someone was looking for great parks in Vancouver. The top entries will most likely be publications, as their SEO rating is incredibly high due to the volume of content they produce. That being said, if the parks and recreation organization is focusing enough efforts on SEO, they should place fairly high. The City of Vancouver is the 4th hit on Google when searching for “great parks in Vancouver.”

 

Focus on SEO because it will help you tremendously with brand awareness, as well as finding potential members for your facilities. Check out our free webinar on Google, and maximizing what the world’s largest search engine offers for free.

 

E-mail Marketing

E-mail marketing is still being touted as one of the most effective digital marketing strategies. It is one of the most effective, yet least difficult things to manage. An intelligently designed email can do wonders for keeping your audience engaged. One thing to be careful about is to email your members too frequently. People get tired of emails pretty quickly. Some great ideas for parks and recreation organizations are monthly or weekly emails focused on “things to do”, events, news, and “pro tips” from some of your senior instructors.

 

Content Marketing

Content marketing is huge because you want to give people a reason to keep coming back to your website. If you only post about your facilities and what goes on, it gives only your community members reason to visit. However, if you are consistently putting up valuable, high-quality content on your blog and social media channels, you will attract many different people to keep visiting your site. Some great examples of parks and recreation organizations doing this include the NRPA, Cleveland Metroparks and NYC Parks.

 

Need some more inspiration? Check out the 5 most engaging parks and recreation groups in America to see how they engage with their community utilizing social media. Want to create more meaningful relationship with your community? Duncan M. Stokes, Executive Director for Recreation Connections Manitoba, joins us for this free webinar on connecting your parks and recreation community with the right marketing channels. PerfectMind is dedicated to helping you grow and maintain these relationships. See how our parks and recreation management software can help.

 

What was your workplace’s best marketing effort of 2015? What made it so successful? Let us know on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Google+, to stay up to date with all of your PerfectMind news.

Sophia Munoz
Sophia Munoz

Sophia is the Marketing and Events Coordinator at PerfectMind. She coordinates webinars, campaigns and events, which help empower membership-based organizations to connect with their members.

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