Page 1

By Ashley Sturm


Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary…………………………………………………………………………………………………...3 2. Situation Analysis……………………………………………………………………………………………………….4 2.1

History & Background of the Organization


Internal Factors


External Factors


Communication Audit

3. Planning……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….8 3.1.

Goal & Objectives


Target Audience


Action Strategies


Communication Strategies & Tactics

4. Evaluation Methods………………………………………………………………………………………………….15 5. Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………16 6. Appendix A………………………………………………………………………Colored Social Media Flyer 7. Appendix B……………………………………………………………………….Black & White Social Flyer 8. Appendix C……………………………………………………………………….Survey to Measure Traffic


Executive Summary

Gone is the day of walking into a large corporation to hand over your resume for a job position. Any unemployed job hunter knows it’s essential to be plugged in to the Internet when searching for their next career. As a non-profit organization wanting to help those job hunters, it’s essential for Professionals in Transition, Inc. (PIT) to be plugged in to the Internet with them. However, PIT isn’t the only organization looking to help the unemployed; the job market’s slow recovery in the Piedmont area of North Carolina has created fierce competition. Whether it’s other non-profit groups, government organizations or for-profit businesses, the unemployed professional has a choice on where to receive help. By utilizing the digital media platform with current media campaigns, PIT will not only increase its client base, but will strengthen its brand among the community.


Situation Analysis History and Background Since 1992, Professionals In Transition, Inc.® has been offering weekly support group meetings for the unemployed and under-employed in North Carolina. In the past 18 years, PIT has responded to the re-employment needs of more than 3,000 professionals and their families. Grassroots marketing has proved to be successful for the company; implementing the same marketing strategies in the social media realm will move the organization ahead of its competitors. Internal Factors Non-Profit Organization Being a non-profit, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, PIT is supported through foundations, corporate partners, friends of PIT and PIT Alumni. The strong foundation of long-time supporters will prove to be a strength when trying to gain support in the social media campaign. Staff The organization’s staff consists of its founder and three participating board members: Damian Birkel, Tom Desch, Bruce DeBole and Don Witte. •

Damian Birkel has built a successful career in marketing management over a 30-year period with leading Fortune 500 corporations, including Sara Lee, Dillard's Department Stores (Higbee's) and Macy’s (The May Company). He is also the Founder of Professionals In Transition.

Tom Desch is a Partner and Sr. Associate in Associates For Professional Development, a coaching and organizational development practice in Winston-Salem, NC. He has conducted hundreds of leadership programs for industry and government and has coached more than 100 business leaders over the past 15 years.

5 •

Bruce DeBole is a member of the Board of Directors of Professionals In Transition and serves a PIT meeting facilitator. He is considered the leading PIT expert on networking and has taught and coached hundreds of PIT members over the past eight years. His unique methods of networking eliminate the stress of making contacts and shorten the transition to re-employment.

Don Witte is currently Chairman of the Professionals In Transition Board and specializes in personal marketing and career development. He retired from a long career in relationship/loyalty marketing, planning and advertising in the transportation industry with United Airlines, Piedmont Airlines and US Airways, the non-profit arena with Old Salem Inc. and management consulting providing executive coaching and training. Don now works with individuals who are unemployed or underemployed providing personal coaching and marketing direction and techniques including resume development, the networking process, and interviewing and presentation skills.

The lack of online training among the staff members will prove to be a challenge with implementing a social media campaign; however, with time, dedication and effort, this group has the potential to overcome that obstacle. Existing Online Presence Currently PIT does have a website and a LinkedIn Group. The website is currently,, but will soon be updated with The switch to the new .com address will provide greater brand recognition and consumer ease. The LinkedIn group “Professionals In Transition” currently has 780 active members. This creates an immediate base to draw from for the social media campaign.

6 External Factors Current Unemployment Rates The target areas that PIT serves continue to struggle with unemployment. The Employment Security Commission June monthly report found that 45 counties in the state saw an increase in unemployment. PIT’s target counties all saw increases: •

Alamance: up .2% to a total of 11.1%

Guilford: up .5% to a total of 10.9%

Randolph: up .2% to a total of 9.9%

Davidson: up .1% to a total of 12.0%

Forsyth: up .3% to a total of 9.5%

Stokes: up.1% to a total of 9.8%

Competition JobLink “The goal of the JobLink Career Center system is to provide comprehensive services for individuals and employers all under one roof. This "One-Stop" system provides efficiency and convenience by combining the services of many work-related agencies in each Center.” Joyce Richman and Associates “At Joyce Richman and Associates, Ltd., we work with people in transition – some are seeking to evolve to new levels of performance within their current roles, others have experienced downsizing and are seeking new work, some people are choosing to change careers, and still others are preparing themselves for future advancement opportunities. In addition to working with individuals, Joyce Richman and Associates, Ltd. also offers seminars, presentations, and workshops to corporations, professional associations, civic and trade groups. And finally, we partner with organizations who seek coaching for their executives and high potential managers.”

7 Social Trends According to research conducted by Cone, known as a reference for companies seeking to understand this critical and rapidly evolving landscape, approximately 60% of Americans use social media. According to the study conducted in 2008, an overwhelming majority of these (93%) say companies should have a social media presence, while 85% of social media users believe these companies should not only be present but should interact with consumers through social media. Among social media users, 59% interact with companies on social media websites and one in four interacts more than once per week. Some 56% of social-media users feel both a stronger connection with and better served by companies when they can interact with them in a social media environment. Communication Audit Other than the organization’s website and the LinkedIn group aforementioned within the internal factors, PIT’s main source of communication with the community has been organic. With 18 years invested in the Piedmont community, PIT and it’s founder have created a relationship with many traditional media sources. Winston-Salem Journal, News&Record, WXII-TV, WGHP Fox 8 and WFMY News 2 have all frequented PIT’s seminars and/or have called on Damian Birkel, the founder, as an expert source on the topic of unemployment. However, PIT’s main source of communication still stems from face-to-face networking.


Planning Goals & Objectives Campaign Goal To create awareness and increase visibility within digital media platforms. Objective 1 To create a strong profile visibility online within 30-90 days. Objective 2 To create a positive online reputation within a six month period. Objective 3 To increase online traffic to within a six month period.


Target Audience The major online target audience for Professionals in Transition spans from a recently laid off worker looking for work to a professional looking to change careers. Because PIT offers a wide variety of assistance and advice to anyone looking to improve their employment situation, the online major target audience could be a variety of those interested in transitioning their career. The key target audiences for PIT consists of the current network base on LinkedIn, seasoned users of social media sites, other job-searching related organizations involved in social media and the current members of PIT. •

Professionals in Transition’s LinkedIn network of 780 members will be a springboard for this social media campaign. Because this key target audience is already involved in an online social media site, they will be more willing to participate in other social media sites.

Seasoned users of social media sites are another key target audience. These users are familiar and comfortable engaging in a variety of social media sites. However, they are not aware of PIT’s presence in the community. Gaining their attention will be essential to attracting visibility.

Job Searching related organizations involved in social media are an essential key target audience in this campaign. These organizations have similar goals and address similar topics as the PIT brand (e.g. @gsojobs on Twitter, Zulu jobs, newspaper classifieds, etc.)

Current members of Professionals in Transition are the only key target audience that provides the opportunity for face-to-face feedback. While this public should be encouraged to participate in the social media campaign, they can also gauge how the campaign in working on a monthly basis. They are also the source for some of the promotional materials you will use in completing your objectives.


Action Strategies Policy Changes/Recommendations Before you can measure whether the social media campaign is a success, you must know how much traffic your current profiles and homesite receives. Three methods will be used to determine the current traffic. 1. Survey current members of the PIT group before the social media campaign begins. The survey will provide insight about if and how they use the current homesite. 2. LinkedIn provides updated information as to how many people have viewed the group’s site and the number of members within the group. Record LinkedIn statistics daily. 3. Conduct a traffic analysis on PIT’s current website, consider using a free programs: •

Google Analytics will allow you to track your traffic levels (among other things) and will allow you to identify where the site's traffic is coming from. Record/Measure o Overall traffic increases o Where your traffic is coming from, i.e. digg, twitter, etc. o Most trafficked key terms or phrases (if this is something you are interested in) searches the best live sites on the web for the latest news, blog posts, videos and images. You can personalize your dashboard with a phrase search, such as “professionals in transition”. Record/Measure o The frequency of mentions in each category o The type of mentions (positive, negative, neutral) in each category allows you to easily track and measure what people are saying about you, your company, a new product, or any

11 topic across the web's social media landscape in real-time. Social Mention monitors 100+ social media properties directly including: Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc. Record/Measure o The strength percentage o The number of hours it takes for each mention o The last time of mention Additional Research Investing a little bit of time into the social media platforms you will be using will go a long way. Each social media site comes with its own lingo that you will need to familiarize yourself with. A simple Google search on “Twitter language” or “Facebook lingo” will provide you with the basics.

Branding When creating profiles for each outlet (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), branding is key. The organization’s name “Professionals in Transition” needs to remain consistent; the organization’s profile image is just as important. Determine what PIT’s logo is and make sure that image is consistent on every single outlet. Arrangements/Other Action Strategies Determine the staff member that will be responsible for the social media campaign. Someone needs to be dedicated to making sure the daily task are attended to in order to meet the overall objectives. Failure to secure someone with time to dedicate to the effort would substantively alter this strategy.


Communications Strategies and Tactics Campaign Goal: To create awareness and increase visibility within digital media platforms. Objective 1: Create strong profile visibility online within 30-90 days. Strategy: To become active in the most popular social media sites in order to create awareness about Professionals in Transition and the services the organization offers. Rationale: In the past PIT has found success in many traditional forms of communications: television, radio and newspaper. However, it does not exist in the social media realm. Other than a LinkedIn profile and a few YouTube posts, “Professionals In Transition� is nowhere to be found. In order to stay ahead in a competitive market and to fully assist the clients that require its help, PIT must participate in social media. Tactic: Facebook Account. To create and manage a Facebook Fan page; repost informational items that would help a job hunter at least three times a week. Aim for at least 500 fans. Tactic: Twitter Account. To create a Twitter account that is utilized multiple times daily for original content, re-tweets, networking among other job-help related organizations and job hunters. Aim for at least 500 followers. Tactic: Connectivity. To interlace current LinkedIn account, Facebook and Twitter accounts in order to draw more links to


Objective 2: Create a positive online reputation within a six-month period. Strategy: To not only be active, but useful to those who associate with PIT in various social media outlets. Rationale: In the online sphere, an organization can’t just be using social media outlets to post commercials; it must provide a type of service to those involved. A positive online reputation means a larger network of those interested in what PIT has to offer. Tactic: Video/Blogs. To create original video content for post on YouTube. These are to be interlaced with the Facebook Fan page. Examples of video content could be a “Do This, Not That” Franchise, a comedic approach to how (and how not) to approach the job-hunting world. To create meaningful blogs that will help others in their search. Creating a franchised blog and/or contributing to already present and successful blogs will help strengthen the reputation of the brand. Aim for a high number of clicks and notify each media site of the post. Tactic: Success Stories. Request facebook fans that have worked with PIT successfully to submit their story. Post it for proof on the Fan page. Tactic: Be A Proactive Twitter User. Search for specific terms such as “job”, “unemployed”, “fired”, etc. Find users that may have mentioned job-hunting or have just lost their job. Take time to reach out to each user one-by-one to offer your condolences and your advice for what they should do next. Do not push or promote, just provide the help if they want it.

14 Objective 3: To increase online traffic to within a six-month period. Strategy: To benefit from the social media outlets by driving traffic to PIT’s website. Rationale: The social media users that have benefited from advice from PIT’s facebook fan page or have found PIT’s tweet useful will be interested to know what the organization is really about. With all of the sites already interlaced, clicking on the posted link (whether it is the Facebook Fan page or Twitter profile) will drive up traffic to Tactic: Use Hyperlinks. When posting an original blog or video, be sure to always include at “” at the bottom of the post. Tactic: Tease the Site. This is useful on an infrequent basis. Have a great article posted on the organization’s website that could be useful? Give users a “hook” and “tease” to the site. Example: “You just lost your job. Now what? We know how to help:” Tactic: Flyers. Make your online presence a priority. At each and every weekly meeting, have flyers available explaining to those which social media groups your organization is involved with. Explain how their participation in those groups will benefit them in their job search. E.g. “Be sure to follow me @professionalsintransition on That is the best way for you to receive the most current job openings in our area – if I know of one, I’ll post it. For the best information, check out” Tactic: Make Your Website Useful and New. Does your website look the same way it did six months ago? Is their any new content? Give frequenters a reason to come back and check the site for updates. If they know it is always going to contain the same content, they will quit visiting.


Evaluation Methods Objective 1: Profile Visibility. Create strong profile visibility online within 30-90 days. To evaluate the profile visibility online, a variety of quantitative measurements should be taken before and during the campaign. Using Google Analytics, and, monitor the campaign’s progress weekly. With PIT being new to many social media networks, initial visibility growth should be substantial. Aim for at least 50% increased visibility online. Using weekly meetings and the current LinkedIn network, drive users to the new Facebook and Twitter accounts. Aim for at least 200 friends/followers in 30 days. Aim to reach 500 in 90 days. Objective.2: Positive Brand. Create a positive online reputation within a six-month period. To evaluate the online reputation and brand management of PIT, qualitative measurements will need to be utilized. While will give an overview of what sentiment is associated with your brand, the best evaluation comes from your social media network. Focus on where your campaign is being targeted. Monthly, use Twitter Search and read through your own discussion boards on the Facebook Fan page. What words are people using to describe your brand? If you want these in the form of quantitative results, evaluate each comment as positive, negative or neutral. Also, evaluate the results of monthly. Measure your brand before your campaigns, during and then afterward, and see if the buzz about your brand has changed.

16 Objective.3: Homesite Traffic. To increase online traffic to within a six-month period. To evaluate the online traffic at, qualitative results will be used. With Google Analytics, the traffic flow to the website will be monitored. Another way to monitor the effectiveness of the website is to survey the new PIT members. Evaluate how they heard about the group and through which medium. Also, the current PIT members should be surveyed monthly. The surveys will evaluate if and how they are using the current website in their job-hunting routine. Monitor the questionnaires to evaluate a change in routine.


Conclusion It is now the responsibility of Professionals in Transition to implement, monitor and measure the effectiveness of the goal, objectives and tactics presented in this campaign. To effectively carry out this campaign, it is suggested that the organization’s founder become immersed within the social media campaign. The strategies and tactics are specific and detailed and will produce benefits if implemented. I believe that Professionals in Transition can make the social media campaign a reality.


JOIN IN ON THE DISCUSSION: NETWORKING, JOB TIPS AND MORE Become a Facebook Fan! Just search “Professionals In Transition” Follow us @professionalsintransition on Twitter

professionalsi ntran sition. co m


JOIN IN ON THE DISCUSSION: NETWORKING, JOB TIPS AND MORE Become a Facebook Fan! Just search “Professionals In Transition” Follow us @professionalsintransition on Twitter

professionalsi ntran sition. co m


PROFESSIONALS IN TRANSITION MEMBER SURVEY 1. Have you visited the Professionals in Transition website?  Yes  No 2. If you have, how would you rate your level of satisfaction with the website?  Highly Satisfied  Somewhat Satisfied  Neutral  Somewhat Dissatisfied  High Dissatisfied  No Response 3. If you have visited the site, how often do you frequent the site?  Once a day  Once a week  Once a month  Once every few months  I’ve only visited once 4. When job hunting, what is your main source for searching for open positions?  Newspaper  Word of Mouth  Online  Job Resource Centers 5. Rank the importance of the following social networks in your opinion (1 being the least important, 5 being the most important) ____LinkedIn ____Facebook ____Twitter ____Blogs ____Other 6. If you use social media, how often?  Multiple times a day  Once a day  Once a week  Once a month  I don’t use social media

21 7. If you use social media, would you be willing to follow or become a fan of Professionals in Transition?  Yes  No 8. How could Professionals in Transition use social media to help you in your job search? _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ 9. What is your gender?  Male  Female 10. What is your age?  18-29  30-39  40-49  50-59  60-69  Prefer Not to Answer

PIT Social Media Campaign  

Professionals in Transition Social Media Campaign