The society in action – spreading the word

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We deal with almost 1000 cases a year assisting communities, groups and individuals in protecting their local spaces and paths in all parts of England and Wales. Can you help us by joining as a member?

The society’s digital content and marketing manager, Nichola Finan gave a talk at our recent AGM outlining how the website and social media are being harnessed to spread the word.

We want to promote the Open Spaces Society vision and mission to a wide range of supporters and potential members, plus government and other organisations that we can influence to achieve our aims. In a nutshell, we want as many people as possible to understand that the society is a dynamic, effective, campaigning charity that you can trust and that you should support and join. The strategic plan for the period to 2024 provides the detail of how this will be achieved and contains more detailed objectives and goals.

Digital marketing is becoming increasingly important to the society because the use of digital media by the audience is rising to the point where in 2019, ONS data tracks 90% of the 64+ age group using the internet recently and 40% of the 75+ age group – both of which are key demographics for our future.

ONS internet use

ONS internet use

Digital marketing compared to traditional press and broadcast channels is proving to be a more efficient model for the society as it is more cost effective, allows for more precise targeting and personalisation and the feedback that is possible via email and messaging allows for conversation and detailed measurement to take place. Of course there is huge competition for people’s time and attention, not only from other charitable and worthy causes but from retailers  and entertainment offers, all of which are very apparent in digital media at home and through the data network, pretty much everywhere else besides. A report published by one of the largest advertising agency networks, Dentsu/Aegis, talks about the ‘attention economy’ and how to communicate effectively marketers have to create ‘opportunities to communicate’ and not just ‘opportunties to see’ to gain attention and engagement from a chosen audience. The society’s marketing using the website, emails and social media stories aims to initiate dialogue and interest in paths and open spaces by making the topic relevant and interesting.

We estimate that the potential supporter/influencer community for the society is more than 170,000 individuals. This figure is broken down as follows

  • 1,900 members
  • 11,000 supporters (email subscribers and social media followers)
  • 10,000 website visitors monthly
  • 150,000 aware (views of social media promotions and Google search listing adverts)

    Open Spaces Society audiences for digital marketing

    Open Spaces Society audiences

The society is in receipt of a significant Google grant which pays for free search listing adverts which in turn generate a lot of the website visits seen.

Members of the society, where we have permission and email details, receive regular eZines containing campaign and appeal news updates. Website visitors are encouraged to dig deeply into the expert content to help resolve issues they may be facing or to read about our campaign successes and ongoing challenges. Followers of the social media profiles, in particular Facebook and Twitter follow links to visit the website and are encouraged to share and comment on our posts

Nichola finished her talk with an appeal for  help to spread the word, asking the audience to play their part by visiting and recommending the website, following the society’s social media profiles (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linked In) and commenting on and sharing posts and other content of interest.

If you have not already subscribed to receive our eZine you can do so here.


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