Marketing solutions for little orgs with big dreams.
Social Media Marketing Sponsorship

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

orporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is not just a marketing tool – it is our opportunity as business owners to contribute to the well-being of of the world around us. If you have not yet considered how you can use your small business to give back, what are you even doing?

There are several schools of thought on what CSR is and how it can (or should) be implemented, so it is not surprising that CSR may look differently for you than it does for others. I would implore you to think strategically when it comes to your own CSR and consider how you can align your do-gooder efforts with your brand marketing.

I was recently inspired by the efforts of Fortina Solutions, a senior living information and referral service provider.  Founder and owner Allyson Nathan must be an animal-lover, as she found a way to support animals while promoting her brand in a way that makes sense. The company contributes to Santa Fe Animal Shelter to spotlight a senior pet each month, and the shelter includes information on the company in its related social media posts.

I can’t lie – I went ahead and copied them. JTE Communications now sponsors a Critter each month in a similar sponsorship/marketing deal! Critters are the non-cat-or-dog residents of the shelter, such as house rabbits, guinea pigs and the occasional snake, bird and other small animal.

Meet Chewy, the spotlight Critter of September – a five-year-old guinea pig with a heart of gold and a love for all things veggie:

I volunteer at Santa Fe Animal Shelter every week, often working with the critters. You might even say that I love small animals as much as I love small businesses and nonprofits! Making sure I keep time open in my work schedule to volunteer is one of the ways I promote CSR, and sponsorship to promote the adoption of small animals is another.

Will this drive new business to my agency?  I sure hope so!  I know that the shelter’s social media pages have followers of all ages from Santa Fe and beyond who happen to love animals and rescue just like I do, and some of them are also business owners who may have marketing needs.

Just last week during a consultation when I asked a client how she heard about JTE Communications she said she was Googling marketing agencies in the area and saw that I had posted photos with a dog and wanted to know more. Sharing your interests with your community is an often overlooked way to connect with target audiences.

Not sure where to start on your CSR journey?  Ask yourself what are you passionate about, and what community activities are you already engaged in?  Connect with the organizations doing work that you find meaningful and see how you can get involved. Schedule a meeting with their director or development manager and see what kind of partnership you can create together. I should know – you don’t need a huge budget to find a partnership that can work for you as well as the organization you support.

Want help figuring out how to best allocate your marketing budget to support your community?  Schedule a free 30-minute consultation with me now and lets brainstorm together.

Social Media Marketing

Twitter Basics for Newbies: Is Twitter Enough?

Today in a consultation a client asked me whether Twitter was enough to be found on the Internet and spread their message, or if they should be utilizing additional social media platforms. The answer to this question may differ depending on who is asking, but the short answer is: Yes, one social media profile can be enough, and Twitter is as good as any.

If you have the means to invest in a robust social media marketing plan and engage with an expert to manage and implement your vision then by all means do not limit yourself to a single platform! There are real drawbacks to choosing just one social media platform, mainly that you are limiting your audience size. Some folks might maintain active profiles on all of the most commonly-used social media platforms, but most of them are only engaging in one or maybe two. If you want to cast the widest net possible, you should reach out to multiple platforms.

However, most of us live in a place called reality where we do not have the social media marketing budget our vision deserves. We need to be strategic in our planning and intentional in our actions. If you are brand new to social media and doing it all on your own you are likely limited in the amount of time you have to dedicate to creating profiles and generating new content. It is better that you pick one and do it well than to try to do too much, not be able to keep up and give up on social media entirely.

There are apps out there that claim you can create one post and it will automatically share it with multiple platforms, but please do not believe them. Each platform has different character limits and image size requirements. More importantly, each platform is its own community with a distinct audience and culture. People are not going to Twitter to see links to your Instagram post, and they are not going to Facebook to sift through a pile of hashtags. An occasional cross-platform post may be called for every now and then, but checking the “also post to…” box is not winning you any followers.

What is @?

In the Twitterverse the @ (at symbol) signifies a username or handle. You can change your username, but you should not do so willy-nilly. Your username is a big part of your Twitter identity, and also used in the URL for your profile page. For example, my twitter username is @JTEComms and you can find my profile at

When you are composing a tweet (post) you can “tag” other accounts by including their username with the @ symbol. This is known as a mention. When you mention an account in your tweet the handle will automatically become a hotlink to that user’s profile, and that user will be able to see that you mentioned their page in their analytics. Think of it as a shout-out or a namedrop. It alerts them that you are talking about them while drawing their attention to your account, and allows your followers to easily connect with their content.

Alternatively, if you start out your tweet with a username it is as though you are speaking to that person directly. This is not the same as a direct message, which is a private message that goes only to them. This is more like calling out their name in a crowded restaurant to get their attention, and everyone else in the room can hear it, too.

What is #?

Twitter is all about hashtags (#)! Similar to the @ sign, when you put a # in front of a word it creates a highlighted hotlink. Clicking on that link will bring up a list of every tweet that contains the same tag. You can use hashtags to find people who are talking about the subjects that are important to you and your brand. And you can put hashtags in your posts to help other people find you.

Another way to think of hashtags is like an exclamatory summary of your post. If you have any millennials in your circle you may have already heard this leak into conversation. “Molly’s dad just bought here a new car. Hashtag daddy’s girl!” (In Tweet form that would be #daddysgirl – no spaces or punctuation in your hashtags).

Don’t go crazy – try and keep it to a max of three. And don’t feel like you need to use them in every post.


In order to build goodwill on Twitter and create your own community you need to engage. This means you need to follow relevant accounts, reply to their tweets and retweet their posts (share their tweet on your own feed for your followers to see). Follow a few topics relevant to your industry and join in the conversations!

Do try to remember when using Twitter for your business to stay on brand. This is not your personal Twitter account, and unless you are an animal-related organization you should not flood your feed with cat pics. Remember what your vision is and ensure that your posts, comments and retweets reflect that.

Have more questions about Twitter? Or other social media? Let’s talk!

Analytics Social Media Marketing

What are Your Social Media Marketing Goals?

Before you ask yourself how to measure social media results you need to take a step back and examine what your social media goals are. Research shows that setting goals leads to better performance for both teams and individuals (van der Hoek, Groenveld, & Kulpers, 2018) (Latham, Seijts, & Slocum, 2016), and this principle definitely applies to social media marketing. And knowing what your goals are will help you determine what data to track and how to interpret it to improve your results over time.

You may want to look at your analytics results by week or month to get a big picture view of what is going on. When you see big changes in either direction you can go back to that period and look closer to find out what actions may have led to the change.

A common social media goal is to increase brand awareness. If this is your goal you will want to pay attention to the number of people who have shown interest in your social media accounts and the actual reach of your posts. You can find this information in the analytics tools provided by each social media platform or via a third-party tool.

  • Followers or Likes
  • Reach of posts

Are your followers just looking at your content and scrolling by? Or are they stopping to engage with you? Tracking engagement will give you an idea of how many people are interacting with your content and how often. When you see an individual post that has received a lot of attention you can determine what caused the engagement and replicate that strategy. You may also find that different types of posts have a warmer reception on different platforms, which can allow you to better target your content for your audience in the future.

  • Likes
  • Shares/RTs
  • Comments/Replies
  • Mentions

You might have tons of followers and huge reach, but are those viewers making it to your website? If your goal in using social media is to drive traffic to your website you will want to track how many visitors are coming to your website from your social media pages. Google Analytics is a powerful and free tool that allows you to look at how many of your website viewers came to your page from a social media site, how many of those are new versus repeat users, their average session duration, how many pages they are visiting and your bounce rate. And you can dig deeper to find date for each of your social media accounts. Look for trends and see what changes you can make to your social media posts not only to lead more people to go your site but to keep them there longer.

Are your social media fans signing up for your newsletter or otherwise providing you with their contact information? You can use Google Analytics again to set up conversion goals that show you exactly how many social media users are entering their lead information on your website or landing page. If you have a lot of social media followers visiting your website but they are not signing up or giving you a way to contact them you can try making changes to your social media posts to generate more engagement, or try making changes to your website/landing page to encourage more people to participate.

Similar to lead generation you can track whether your social media content is resulting in sales or donations. This may be easy if you are selling or collecting donations directly on a social media platform! But using Google Analytics again you can also set up conversion goals or use Ecommerce Tracking features to measure how much of the revenue from your website you can attribute to your social media activities.

If you are using social media for customer support you should measure how often customers are engaging with you, how efficiently you are responding to them and how effectively you are meeting their needs. You can track the number of questions you receive, your response time in getting back to them, and customer satisfaction. You may want to ask customers to rate their satisfaction after each interaction or ask for feedback on how to improve to track qualitative data.

In order to better understand trends in your social media data it is a best practice to track your own production. How many posts did you publish during the week or on that day? Are there any correlations between your posting frequency and the goals you are tracking that you can take advantage of? Are you seeing more website traffic from social media when you post more videos on Facebook, or seeing more engagement when you post more stories on Instagram? Is there something different about the way you worded the post that saw the most engagement that you can replicate?

Setting goals and tracking data will set you on a path towards a comprehensive social media strategy that works for you! It will save you from tracking numbers that do not tell you anything or from focusing on metrics that aren’t supporting your bottom line.

Latham, G., Seijts, G., & Slocum, J. (2016). The goal setting and goal orientation labyrinth: Effective ways for increasing employee performance. Organizational Dynamics, 45(4), 271-277. Retrieved from

van der Hoek, M., Groenveld, S., & Kulpers, B. (2018). Goal Setting in Teams: Goal Clarity and Team Performance in the Public Sector. Review of Public Personnel Administration, 38(4), 472-493. Retrieved from

Social Media Marketing

Five Social Media Myths Busted

While no longer new, social media continues to be misunderstood by many who seek to use it for their organizations. Whether your goal is to reach donors to support your mission, connect with people in need of the services you offer or sell your products to new customers here are a few misguided beliefs that could lead you astray:

1. Social Media is Free

I can set up free social media accounts and instantly reach thousands of people and build my brand – for free! As the old saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it is. Signing up for an account may be free, but “free” stops there.

There is a learning curve for each social media platform and creating a presence on any of them takes time. Whether that means your own time, a junior staffer’s time or a consultant’s time that time costs money. And no matter how you slice it, maintaining an active presence on any platform will continue to take time. The number one pitfall among new and experienced users alike is underestimating the amount of time coordinating social media will actually take and how much that time will actually cost.

2. If You Build It, They Will Come

There may have been a time when building a Facebook or Twitter page and regularly posting engaging content was enough to gain followers – but that time has passed. Building an amazing page will not do you any good if no one can see it. Social media platforms are for-profit corporations and they know exactly how valuable their services are, which is why they each come with their own marketing tools. When used correctly those tools exponentially increase your odds of having your material seen by the exact people you are targeting. A well-crafted post advertised to the right people will get you further than any click-bait gimmick, especially when you are first building your social media presence. And while not free, these tools can garner impressive results for very little cost.

3. More is More

Not every organization needs to be on every social media platform. Too often we are conditioned to look only at the big picture and we weigh decisions too heavily based on the larger scale. It sounds logical that the more social media platforms you are on the more people you can reach, and the more followers you have on every platform the more effective you are. Unfortunately focusing only on that big picture can lead to a massive waste of everyone’s time.

You need to start by defining who exactly you are trying to reach, what message you would like to deliver and with what medium. It is important to remember that your target audience is not the Internet at large. For example, if you are trying to sell a product to men over 65 you probably do not want to invest time in creating an Instagram account because only 31 percent of Instagram users identify as male and only 8 percent are 65 or older 1 . Similarly, if you do not intend to regularly create new video content you probably do not need to create a YouTube Channel. You can literally buy Twitter followers online 2 , but having more followers does not mean anything if they are not the people you are trying to build relationships with. The total number of followers and the reach of your content are important, but what is more important is understanding who those people are and how you can connect with them so that you can meet your communications goals.

4. Some content is better than no content

Some high-quality content may be better than no content at all, but no content at all is definitely better than bad content. “Bad” may be a subjective term, but a good guideline is to verify that your words are spelled correctly, your images are attractive and your message is reflective of your brand and meaningful to your viewers. It is better to take more time to make sure every aspect is polished than to rush out something sloppy to meet your own arbitrary deadline. You should plan ahead with a posting schedule that you can realistically meet and always value the content more than your schedule. This means you also have to recognize when your schedule and/or expectations are unreasonable and adapt accordingly.

Each social media platform is unique so how often to post varies. If you can only commit to one or two posts per week then do not bother with Twitter or Pinterest but instead focus on Facebook or Instagram. Use scheduling tools to post consistently, and monitor your analytics to post when your followers are most active.

5. Instant results!

You cannot expect instant results from social media. The hard truth is that whether you are doing it in person or online building relationships with people takes time. It is not realistic to expect to see the end result of more sales or donations in a week or a month. The more strategic you are in managing your social media accounts the more likely you are to see positive results, but you should still expect this to take time. Bottom line – social media is not a magic bullet for fundraising or sales, it is a medium to connect with people and build relationships. If online relationship building is not a priority you want to work towards then you may not need to include social media in your marketing plan.

If you are not able to invest the time and resources needed to regularly share quality content on social media then social media may not be for you, and that is okay! A better approach may be to produce a monthly electronic newsletter for your clients, to advertise on a specific website or to focus on print advertising in relevant publications. Social media is just one of many tools available to help you communicate with your clients. Whether you are already on social media, just getting started online or headed in a different direction JTE Communications would love to work with you to craft and implement a communications plan that meets your specific needs. Click here to get started with a free 30-minute consultation.


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