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American Marketing Association - Cleveland Chapter. The premier association for marketers in Northeast Ohio.

Blog Archive

As part of our effort to keep you up-to-date on the latest marketing trends, we've gathered insights from thought leaders in Cleveland and across the nation on the Cleveland AMA blog.

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Why Theme Parties Are Always Better - Period.

Eric Barnett

I love them for many reasons. Most importantly, I love them because they create a common element that everyone can unite behind and join in the fun! No one is left out, unless you forget to wear a costume of course, and no one wants to be that guy. People always want to be a part of a group, it is part of how we operate. We also have a natural inclination to lump things together in our head; to try and make them fit into a nice, neat little package. Why not take advantage of these human tendencies when developing your content strategy? One of the most frequent questions I get asked from people when I’m speaking about social media is, “how do I figure out what to write about?” This is a question that haunts nearly every company and marketing manager out there. It is part of what makes content marketing so daunting for a lot of organizations.

There is a simple answer though to help you break your writer’s block - THEMES!!!

Ok, let me give you an example...

This past year at Cleveland Metroparks we started a brand new content strategy for our Twitter handle. We had reached 9,000 followers with no real direction or plan of action. We were just tweeting about upcoming programs and riding the popularity of our name. It was working ok, but we wanted it to be better. This was really turning into a significant marketing channel for us - one that we wanted to grow.

So, we sat down and brainstormed some ideas. Most of the conversation, as expected, revolved around, “well, what do we tweet about?” In the end, the answer was so simple it was brilliant. We decided to create “Twitter Theme Days!” During these days, our naturalists and other staff could tweet about a particular subject all day long. Any theme was ok, as long as it was remotely related to Cleveland Metroparks or our mission of “Conservation, Education, Recreation.” Some of our more fun themes included: Animals in Love, Outdoor Play, Birds of Prey, and Winter Recreation. Our Ranger Department even got involved with Seatbelt Safety.

We were able to get buy in from all across the organization. It provided our social media contributors something to rally around. Something everyone could participate in, and they were having fun. Most importantly though, our fans loved it! Within one year’s time because of this new theme based content strategy we were able to grow our Twitter handle to over 18,000 followers! This was an increase of over 100% in less than a year, the largest Cleveland Metroparks had ever seen. We even received national and local recognition! Simply because we provided our fans with more engaging and relevant content. It worked so well, that we are starting to adopt this same strategy with the rest of our social media platforms.

CM Twitter Handle Screenshot (1)
CM Twitter Handle Screenshot (1)

Theme parties are amazing and I love them! And, they are a great way to start developing your content strategy. It doesn’t matter if it’s a theme day, week, or month. Give it a try and see how easily the creative juices start flowing!

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