5 Free Marketing Tools To Promote Your Club In 2023
Running your club through a membership management system like Member Jungle is going really well. It’s allowed you to spend less time organising your club and more time enjoying it. Though you can’t help but notice that the community you’ve built isn’t as big as it could be.
So today let’s talk about five free marketing tools that you can use with your Member Jungle site to promote your club and expand your community.
A little bit of a disclaimer here at the top. Most of the free tools I will be talking about today also have a paid version. I have only included tools on this list whose free versions are so good that you won’t need to worry about upgrading to the paid versions. Several of the tools on this list I use myself in both my day-to-day life and at work.
So without further ado these are the free marketing tools that I will be telling you about today:
- Social Media
- Survey Monkey
Canva describes itself as “a free-to-use online graphic design tool. Use it to create social media posts, presentations, posters, videos, logos and more.”.
Canva is a great place to quickly and easily create stunning images for your club. They have easy-to-use and beautiful templates that allow you to make a great image for your club in literally a few minutes. They also have presets for website banners, YouTube thumbnails, social media posts and even documents and presentations. They also have a massive range of stock photos for you to use in your designs.
I am practising what I preach here. Canva is what I use to create the images and graphics for all my articles and I even used it to create the header image of this article.
Canva is a one-stop shop for all your image needs. Canva’s free version is honestly excellent. You can do pretty much everything you need with it. However, Canva does offer two paid levels; Canva Pro for A$164.00 a year and Canva for Teams for A$209.90 a year. The paid versions gives you access to Canva's branding kit, that allows you to save brand colours and logos. You can also use some amazing photo editing features like an automatic background remover, saving you from having to pay for expensive image editing software. Canva also offers a special free version of their premium service for free if you are a not-for-profit. To see if you qualify for Canva Nonprofit see their Eligibility guidelines.
We all knew this one was coming and well, here it is. Social media, the doom of society and a great free marketing tool. Social media has an extraordinary reach. If used correctly it can make a huge impact on the marketing of your club. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and even Instagram are great ways to market your club. Whether it is creating a Facebook group or posting ads on Instagram and Twitter, this is one free tool that you should be using.
Setting up a Facebook group for your club can be a great way to attract new members. Facebook will recommend your group to users with similar interests who can then join your Facebook group. They can then learn more about your club and see all the benefits and events of becoming a member, equalling more members. Personally, this is how I found the free diving club I am now a member of.
Different social media platforms are better for different clubs. So make sure you are using the right ones for you. Also take into account the average age of users on the platforms to make sure you are advertising to the right crowd. For example a RSL probably doesn't need to be on TikTok where the average audience age is in the late teens.
Here is a breakdown of each major platform’s uses:
- Facebook - Jack of all trades, great for groups
- Instagram - Images and short videos, limited text
- Pinterest - Images, older demographic than Instagram
- TikTok - Short videos, young demographic
- Twitter - Writing and opinions, some photos and videos
- LinkedIn - Professionals, writing, images and videos
The more you know about these platforms the better. You don’t want all your hard marketing work to be going to the wrong groups.
Buffer is a social media management service that helps take a lot of the time out of social media marketing. As previously discussed, social media is a great way to reach and engage new potential members. However, managing multiple social media accounts and posts is a lot of work. Using a free service like Buffer allows you to save a lot of time and effort while using social media to market. Buffer allows you to quickly and easily design and schedule social media posts across multiple platforms. You can use one of their supplied templates to quickly make a social media post and schedule it to post on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms. Meaning that if you want to post something on a Sunday morning you can do it during the week and Buffer will upload it at the right time. You will no longer need to manage your social media in your down time. Buffer offer free post templates, an AI assistant and an analytics service to streamline and improve your social media marketing.
Buffer’s free version gives you access to planning and publishing tools, a landing page builder, an AI assistant and the ability to manage up to three social channels.
They also have three different paid packages that include a bunch of other great features. The price of the paid versions varies based on how many channels you want to manage. To learn more about Buffer’s prices, have a look at the Buffer pricing page.
Here at Member Jungle we offer a poll module and also a custom form module that allows you to run surveys and poll your members' opinions. The vast majority of our customers find these modules more than enough, but in some cases where a more detailed survey is needed Survey Monkey is a great option. Survey Monkey is an advanced surveying tool. Survey Monkey provides users with an extensive range of survey templates. That you can quickly and easily customise to suit your needs. Imagine being able to send out a beautiful survey about your club’s most recent event with a click of a few buttons. This will really help you understand your members better. Reaching out and getting their opinion is a great way to show you care.
Survey Monkey describes itself as a “freemium business model. This means we allow users to use our most basic tools for free while designating our more advanced features and resources to our paid plans.”. You can use Survey Monkey for free and gain access to a wide range of survey templates. You will be limited in the number of responses you can collect per survey and the number of questions you can add to each survey. Survey Monkey's cheapest paid plan is A$26 a month. Even with its limited free features, survey chimp can be a great tool when it comes to marketing your club. To find out more about Survey Monkey's prices have a look at their pricing page.
Now let’s turn to the behemoth of the internet, a brand so big it has turned into a verb. So before you go off and google something else let me tell you about three completely free marketing tools that Google offers.
Google Trends allows you to quickly see which phrases are being searched for most. You can then refine your search by dates, regions, and image searches versus regular web searches. You are probably saying, well that’s all very boring. Why are you doing this to me? Well, let me show you how to use google trends for your club.
You can use Google Trends to drive more traffic to your website and attract new members. You can do this by searching for which words related to your club are searched for most. Then if you include more of these words in your website content you will start appearing higher in people's google searches and before you know it more people are seeing your website and being attracted to your club.
You can also use Google Trends to help attract larger audiences to your public events. Let’s say, you run a historic car club and you want to attract more people to your next event. Before you go naming your event Historic Car Meet, go put 'historic car' and a few variations into google trends. Have a look at what people are searching for. I did this, I put 'classic car', 'historic car' and 'vintage car' into google trends and looked at the searches in Australia in the past year.
We can see from a quick look that ‘classic car’ is a much more popular search than vintage or historical. This took me less than a minute. If you then name your event Classic Car Meet, you will come up in a lot more search results and attract a larger audience.
Google Analytics allows you to sign up for free, enter the details of your website and then monitor all activity on your page. You can see which pages of your website get the most visits, how long people spend on your site and even how they found it in the first place. This means you can see how many people are finding your website via a Google search, advertisements and social media.
Using Google Analytics you can see in real-time how all your marketing efforts are going. Being able to watch how those email and social media posts contribute to your site activity is incredibly useful. Allowing you to see what is and isn’t working for your club’s marketing in real-time.
Google Alerts is a little bit of a funny one to include on this list. Though I still think it is worth mentioning briefly. Google Alerts let you set up alerts on keywords or phrases so you can be notified via email whenever someone talks about them online. This allows you to passively monitor any uses of your set words. Then when someone mentions your club, whether it is a review, website or news story you will get a convenient email notification. so you can always stay up to date with what is being said about your club. Alerts can be set to anything, so if you want to know every time someone posts about sailing in your town you can.
You can also customise how often you get notified and from which sources you are interested in. If you only want to hear genuine news about your topic then you have that ability.
Improve Your Club’s Marketing
I hope that you have found this list helpful and now have some new ideas on how to better market your club. Your club is great and attracting new people to your club should be one of your top priorities. I would really encourage you to pick one of the free tools we have covered, make a free account and start exploring. I’m certain you will find at least one that you love using to help market your club.
If you want to know how we can help you with marketing and managing your club, have a look at What is Member Jungle?
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