Marketing a coworking space is an exercise in multi-tasking. Between content creation, social media, working with channel partners, staying up on reviews and doing paid advertising, a workspace marketer’s work is never finished. We’ve rounded up some of the CloudVO team’s go-to marketing strategies for coworking spaces. Here are five of our favorite.
1. Learn to Love Social Media Marketing
Let’s start with the big one: Social media is an essential part of marketing a coworking space. People are scrolling Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn right now looking for content that speaks to them. It’s important that they see you.
As CloudVO Marketing Manager Kim Seipel says about social media, “Sorry, you have to do it—not because it’s the in-thing, but because that’s where your future coworking members are.”
Express your unique community, workspace offerings and brand on social media, and follow best practices for each different platform. Social media is oftentimes the first impression people get from your brand, and it gives you an opportunity to engage people and invite them to explore more of your content and offerings.
Keeping up with social media trends takes time and effort, but the payoffs for staying in front of your target audience can be big. Here are some tips for using social media:
Post regularly: For Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn, aim to post at least once a day on those platforms. On Twitter you can post numerous times throughout the day, but if you need to streamline things to start out, Instagram and Facebook can be your primary focus, especially at the local level.
Keep your social media content fresh: Post about different things in your social media feeds, and post different things on each platform. If someone follows you everywhere, you don’t want to serve them up the same content over and over. Post about recent content, industry news, events in your space or community, etc.
Leverage trending hashtags: Keep an eye on trending hashtags and creatively work them into your own social media. One note about this: Make sure the hashtag has relevance to your space, town or community. Otherwise, you may see a traffic bump, but no engagement because you didn’t hit your target market.
Create hashtags: You can create your own hashtags for your space, as well as for specific campaigns. Monitor the performance of the hashtags to measure interest and to gauge what resonates with your target audience.
Use scheduling tools: There are a growing number of social media scheduling tools available. These tools help you set it and forget it, so you don’t have to constantly interrupt other work to create social media posts. Popular scheduling tools include Hootsuite, Meet Edgar and Buffer.
2. Solicit Reviews from Your Community
If you depend on Google and Yelp for leads, then solicit reviews from your existing community. The platforms prioritize businesses with good reviews because they want to serve up the most relevant, useful results to searchers.
Potential members of your space—and even people just looking for a place to work for a day—depend on reviews to get a sense of the space, amenities, vibe and community. Make sure you’re listed on both Yelp and Google My Business, and encourage people to add reviews and their own photos. Note: Facebook also enables people to leave reviews.
3. Get on Google My Business
As a follow-up to the above tip, make sure your space is on Google My Business. It’s great for local SEO; it increases your chances of showing up in Google’s Local Pack, Local Finder and Google Maps; it helps strengthen your brand; and it can drive traffic and leads.
It’s free to claim and verify your Google My Business profile. Make sure your profile is complete with description of services and pictures. Add new images to your profile regularly and properly tag and label photos with relevant keywords.
4. Publish Blog Posts
Publishing regularly to your blog is a powerful way to drive traffic, establish your brand, share your company values and showcase your community. Demonstrate your expertise by publishing content that offers audiences insights into specific shared workspace topics and incorporates how your space and brand offers a unique solution to the subject matter. Blogs on current trends such as The Rise of Women-Focused Coworking Spaces are also good content since they speak to your credibility by highlighting you as an industry expert, and can help attract your target audience.
Post content regularly and hire a content writer if necessary (yes, it’s worth it!). Research keywords and utilize them in your posts to help with SEO and driving traffic to your website. Cross promote blog posts through your social media channels.
5. Paid Advertising
The task of setting up Google Ads and paid advertising campaigns can be a bit complicated. But paid advertising strategies can be effective, so they’re worth considering.
With Google Ads, you pay to show up in search results. Depending on your market and target search phrase, it can be expensive, so set a reasonable budget limit and track results. Google provides a library of helpful videos and tutorials on how to get started. The beauty of paid ads is that they allow you to increase the amount of people reached and stand out within specific search results.
You can also pay to advertise your space on Facebook and Yelp. As with Google, set a reasonable budget, track results, and test different ads to see which ones give you the best ROI.
As with all marketing, test a strategy, track results and course-correct to optimize your efforts. Consistency is key to a successful marketing campaign and overall strategy, so start with a simple and sustainable plan and stick with it.
by Cat Johnson, storyteller and content strategist for the coworking movement.