Case Study: Union for Reform Judiasm Social Media Bootcamps
Case Study: Union for Reform Judaism
Sector: Faith Communities Project: Social Media Training
Sarah Best Strategy (SBS) partnered with the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) on two Social Media Bootcamps designed to support member congregations hoping to attract and engage families with young children. We also provided follow up 1:1 coaching with individual synagogues to strengthen skills and address the needs and questions of individual congregations.
In an effort to effectively meet the strategic challenges faced in today’s competitive early childhood education marketplace, the Union for Reform Judaism created the Chicago Early Engagement Leadership Initiative (CEELI) in 2014.
Educators and members of the Chicago Jewish community who participate in CEELI enjoy intensive professional development opportunities about topics such as business and sales development, child development, and marketing. URJ approached Sarah Best Strategy to provide social media content planning and advertising training so that members of the CEELI could:
Effectively design events and programs that attract new families;
Plan digital marketing content and create graphics for social media in a time-efficient way that doesn’t require professional graphic design support;
Utilize a variety of tools to increase the engagement of current families;
Gain hands-on experience that could be tailored to individual congregations;
Share challenges and expertise during highly interactive sessions.
Attendees of our workshops included Reform Synagogues, Conservative Synagogues, Humanistic Congregations, and professionals from faith education programs like jBaby and PJ Library.
We embraced the early childhood education philosophy that experiential learning is best, and designed two intensive, 9am-2pm, bootcamp-style workshops filled with group activities and time to share ideas.
Bootcamp One: Smart Content Planning to Attract Young Families
Using case studies, small group discussions, and opportunities to try out the Canva design tool, participants developed a deeper understanding of who their target audience is and how they can best speak to their needs in effective marketing messaging. They also learned important ways to collaboratively plan social media content across lay leaders, educators, and Rabbinal staff, and to streamline the process of posting social media, from creating planning calendars to utilizing evergreen content.
Bootcamp Two: Social Media Advertising and Tactics to Promote Events
Attendees learned not only how to effectively promote events using social media, but also how to deepen engagement with event participants after the event using follow-up marketing and outreach. They also practiced setting up target audiences in Facebook, learned how to boost posts, and designed campaigns for their educational programs.
1:1 Coaching and Consulting Session
SBS provided one-on-one follow up sessions with individual synagogues to answer questions with a focus on individual congregations’ needs.
Educators and synagogue members learned how to identify and understand key audiences, using empathy and research to create programs and marketing that speak to young families’ core needs and pain points;
Social media posting became more efficient as they learned to plan calendars, content, workflows, as well as repurposing content for websites, emails, and social media;
Event promotion, boosted posts, and other social media advertisements were better utilized to deepen engagement, increase interest in their program, and tell stories that will keep their audiences coming back for more.