Challenge: To boost local awareness of Goethe-Institut Washington’s summer courses and cultural events in the short-term and build a strong social media following in the longer term. Engage directly at first, while simultaneously preparing the Insitut staff to be able to handle social media interaction on their own.
Goethe-Institut is an internationally known organization whose mission is to promote German language and culture around the world. Goethe-Institut Washington tasked Abraham Harrison LLC with the challenge of reaching out to the local community to raise awareness via social media of its cultural offerings and German language courses. It had a very limited social media presence through which to strengthen brand awareness, expand existing communities and increase support of the organization.
Strategies/Tactics: Create interest in the German culture by actively engaging in conversations and highlighting the tradition and quality of what Goethe-Institut Washington had to offer.
Abraham Harrison took the Institut’s Facebook and Twitter profiles from a nascent stage and built and strengthened them in both reach and content. After increasing the following base, the gains were capitalized by providing interesting and sharable content and constantly monitoring and engaging with the audience. A blogger outreach to 800 local bloggers was followed by a “meet and greet” at the Goethe-Institut Washington to entice the bloggers to spread the word about the Institute. Working in the Institut’s social media properties was shared and monitored by both the Institute and Abraham Harrison as a way to acheve immediate goals while also engaging in experiential training for the Institut staff. Abraham Harrison also conducted a formal, in-person training day to the Goethe-Institut Washington staff as a final step to ensure that it was ready to take on full responsibility for the organizations ongoing social media efforts.
Drastically increased brand awareness via online mentions and strengthened presence in social media and the broader Washington DC community.
Ensuring an engaged, interactive community was as important as the aim of increasing the base in Facebook and Twitter. With the advice of Abraham Harrison LLC, Goethe-Institut Washington was able to better understand the users of such social networking sites and provide interesting and engaging content. The public is attracted to these sites not just for information about classes and events, but also to give their input in discussions and polls. The lnstitut is now connected to the local blogosphere and continues to build relationships with bloggers interested in the Institut’s offerings. The staff is trained and the success has continued as Goethe-Institut Washington’s online presence continues to grow.
Be sure to check out the slideshare presentation on the Abraham Harrison Website.