The Reward does not need to be cost prohibitive but it needs to tell the consumer that you are military friendly and appreciate their service during wartime! Yes, military families serve as well so take the time to update and make your Reward something that stands out! Know some local area special venues? Offer to buy them tickets or offer a reduced price ticket. I remember one business in Albuquerque, NM that offered free tickets to the Sandia Peak tram and a discount for dinner on top of the mountain. We loved it and used their business too! Maybe you have a planetarium, zoo or park nearby--buy them tickets! Or add a comment like "Thank you for your service" to your 10% off! It will surprise you what a simple recognition will do for business.
Thank you for your great support to the military community! April is also Month of the Military Child and we will be telling you more about it as it approaches!
What is social media? It is a way of getting to know your customers and potential customers. It is a means of getting the word out about your product. It is a way to build your reputation. There are a lot of ways to get out there and engage in social media. Facebook and myspace are two very popular ways but also very “personal”. Quite a few people won’t accept businesses as friends as they may post personal information they don’t want the world to know about.
One of the newest sites, and very-quickly rising in popularity, is Twitter.com. Local media; marketing professionals; corporations; mom & pop shops; official Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, & Coast Guard Public Affairs officers; *plus* everyday regular folks like you and me use Twitter. It is a menagerie of people waiting to get to know you & what you have to offer.
Who can you meet on sites like ‘Twitter’?
- Current Customers;
- Potential Customers;
- Colleagues around the nation (and world);
- Experts in your industry;
- Newbies in your industry, you could be there expert!
So you create an account on Twitter… what is next? Add a profile picture, use one of their background designs or create your own with a photo, import your professional-email address book and start to ‘tweet’! Wait? What is that word ‘tweet’ mean? A ‘Tweet’ is jargon for something that you write on twitter.
What are things you could ‘Tweet”?
- Weekend events going on in your area;
- Helpful websites specific to your area;
- Did you update your partner ad on MilitaryAvenue? Let folks know!;
- Links to articles on the Internet specific to your industry;
- Blog articles that you just wrote. Peek their interest; let your customers know of your Internet presence.
As Director of Research & Development at MilitaryAvenue what do I tweet?
- What I have to get done for the day, both personal to feel 'connected' (like an oil change at my favorite dealership) and directly related to MilitaryAvenue (like an exciting meeting about future-MilitaryAvenue changes).
- I answer questions from colleagues. @armywifenetwork is very good about asking general army-wife questions. They are fun to think about and send out an answer to. She asked, “What is an important thing to do during deployment.” I answered “@armywifenetwork Get out of the house.” By answering I show other military families that I *know* what it means to be an army wife. I may be an expert in my field, but I am also human and going through what they are too.
- When I write a new post on MilitaryAvenue’s “Our Letters to You”, I post the link to let others know about it. We have a great number of direct followers on MilitaryAvenue as well as our blog. However, we are never happy and always want more folk to know about MilitaryAvenue. Twitter has brought us an even larger audience. Even more military families know about MilitaryAvenue.com and then they don’t forget that we are out there!
- I draw attention to a new timely-article on MilitaryAvenue that my audience might find especially interesting. This sparked a conversation between myself and a military spouse; which other spouses could follow. She worked for the YMCA and the tweet I sent out was about a YMCA scholarship opportunity for military-brats. She was excited to share our site with her co-workers and how we were helping them spread the word.
- I like to get my audience thinking. By asking questions it will engage them. It will help them get to know me.
- Occasionally, I broadcast of a great MilitaryAvenue Discount: If I see a MilitaryAvenue Partner Military Discount that really catches my eye I let others know about it.
Looking for folks to start out following?
@milave_leanne – that is me! Army Wife extraordinaire and director of Research & Development at MilitaryAvenue
@milave_col_k – Air Force Veteran, blogger, MilitaryAvenue Partner expert
@militaryavenue – a direct feed of all the new articles on the site in real time; stay up to date & be informed
@milave_deborah – our Air Force Wife, blogger & wonderful administrative aid
@milave_dan – MilitaryAvenue’s president & CEO, Air Force ‘Brat’ and brand new Dad!
You can also search Twitter for things that are of interest to you. Search the installation, the city, the county, around you and see which folks are talking about it, because they might just be there or coming there soon! Search for keywords in your industry and network. Search for your local radio stations and news stations and keep up with what is happening around you. Be in the know.
I would encourage you to grab ‘Social Media’ by the reigns and enjoy the ride!
- Leanne from MilitaryAvenue.com
We are making exciting progress connecting you, our MilitaryAvenue Partners and your military community. We are using social networking, media coverage, blogging and outreach programs at several installations and much more! But one of the most exciting ways we reach the community is through you, our Partners!
One partner who has been instrumental in opening doors is Main Street Pet Resort and Day Spa at Ft Leavenworth! The owner has been our advocate and spent time spreading the word about us to her friends, fellow business owners and the installation as well! How has she done that and why? First, she was connected with her military customers in her business and knew they provided a built in customer base. Then she recognized that she could use more of them!
Second, she saw the advantages of advertising her services to military families who were looking ahead or were new in the area. She attended a welcome event on the post for newcomers and passed out information about her business! And... guess what? She passed out information on militaryavenue.com as well! She helped create a buzz at Ft Leavenworth about us!
She helped us make contact with the local Army staff and created "Events" on the home page of Ft Leavenworth! These events created new value for our military users and new visitors to ads at Ft Leavenworth.
As a result of her efforts she has seen a great increase in her number of military customers, we have new businesses on the site, new information for our military users and increased traffic! All great news for a business owner, MilitaryAvenue and the ultimate user, your military community!
PS: Would you like to tell us about an event in your local community that the military community needs to know about? Just go to the home page of your local installation; drop down the middle to just below the map and look for the Upcoming Local Events. Find the link "Let us know" and click on it (this one goes to Ft Leavenworth; be sure to use your installation(s). Fill out the event and submit and we will have it on the site quickly! Think about it: Five minutes of your time to help a military family know more about your town could provide a lot of benefits to you, our business partner!
What does this mean to you as a MilitaryAvenue.com Program Partner? Exposure! As an example, the more military families that sign up for our Military Alerts, means more folks are signed up to receive YOUR military discount in their email box, every month! (So by all means make your coupon count.)
Read more about our two monthly-contests at our Military Family Blog:
This Month's Featured Military Reward is given to:
Their Military Reward reads:
Click here to view coupon featured at Camp Pendleton.
A special thank you to Baja Tan and Suntan Center and all of our MAPP partners for supporting your military community with your Rewards.
We choose a Featured MilitaryReward each month to highlight our Partners and their wonderful support to the military community! Our military family team chooses one based on value for the military family and how well it sends the message "military friendly business".