Hi Meghan, Depending on the size of your community, you might be able to leverage HR, marketing, customer care, legal and product teams to spread the word by asking them to temporarily put a link to the nascent community in their email signature. Realizing that the JIVE platform is a great tool to combat email jail, this tactic might help create the initial buzz and awareness. Offer group trainings to familiarize your constituents with the platform and social norms - my team was able to create brown bag social sessions for groups of 10-15 and we asked for internal referrals from those sessions to continue spreading awareness. Emerging communities are interested in the people behind the scenes and it might be helpful to have a few team member highlights written up that you can promote with a nice photo or avatar of the featured person. Having a small budget to offer tsotchkes in addition to your local coffee shop gift cards are sweeteners to promote a test drive of the new social platform. Awareness tactics depends on the size, structure and co-location of your organization which you know best as a social marketer. Best wishes for great success!
For our community launch, we let our champions across the globe decide how they wanted to design their launch party. One popular item were cup cakes branded with the community logo. A couple of offices did that and it was a huge hit. In terms of branded materials, we wanted to keep it simple (and keep costs down) so we created a postcard with a link to the community and 3 easy steps on joining. We then sent a welcome email with more details and a pdf on steps to set up a profile ect.
Just as I was leaving CSC we had started a project to generate a video. Beth Laking the new Community manager might be able to share.
Also I know Ted Hopton at UBM used video effectively as did PwC recently.
(We never had hard budget for giveaways.)
What we did do early on was:
- Create an avatar image "lifeguards" (our advocates) could use on their profile image to identify themselves
- Create a certificate that we could email to our advocates to certify their participation (frame on their wall for bragging rights)
- Create electronic collateral that could be posted online or emailed for a local office to download and print and hang in a local office
- Create Powerpoint quick slides that could be re-used for lunch and learns locally when someone was trying to advocate or demonstrate key points
Hope that helps!
We also did most everything that you and Claire Flanagan mentioned. In addition we launched an enterprise video about our social intranet which included testimonials from users and leaders- it was a fun, light 2.5min video that explained the work benefits of using Jive (which we call Pulse). We also put up print marketing materials around our main people centers, and provided our internal communications teams with collateral that they could print and distribute when they held local launch events. For our enterprise launch we setup help stations in all of the cafeterias in our people centers and staffed them with advocates who provided live help from 10am-2pm daily. They also gave out a TON of branded materials including shirts, pens, stress balls, etc during launch week.
Our instance is called "Connect" so we opted to find creative ways for employees to "Connect" with each other. For not a lot of money we purchased 20 or so bins of K-NEX pieces and placed 5-6 pieces in branded bags. Each bag came with a quick start guide explaining what jive was, how to get there, and how to use it. In addition to the guide, we included a snack and directions for the "Connect Challenge." Employees were encouraged to form teams with others around them use their K-NEX pieces to create something awesome. Each team then had to post their picture on Jive and @mention their team members.
This was a lot of fun, and a few of our IT teams decided to Photoshop their creations into different scenes.
Great idea, Chris! Offering playfulness and an opportunity to be creative while introducing a new process is an easy win.