A Guide to AYSO Marketing for Regions
Welcome to AYSO’s Marketing Guide! Please use this as a resource to provide useful information on how to best build awareness and engagement in your Region. Whether your Region is new or old, below are marketing tips and techniques you can implement as well as a list of resources that are available to you. Let’s get started!
New Marketing/Branding Site – This new site allows you to customize AYSO marketing collateral without needing design software – http://www.aysomarketing.org/. Below you will find links to all other marketing resources.
Identify Your Target Audience
Before you begin marketing for your new Region or for the upcoming season for your existing Region, you need to identify who you will be marketing to. This is crucial because it will determine the marketing mix you choose and the programs you promote.
For example, if you are promoting AYSO’s Core program, you have a large audience to appeal to. It is AYSO’s most well-known entity with the broadest base, parents of school age children, primarily the mothers of the school age children, not the children themselves.
Once you have identified the audience, then you can start learn more about them.
Understanding Your Audience
Like stated above, once you know who you are talking to, you need to understand how they like to be spoken to and what they respond to best.
In this case, the adults that we want to target have the following qualities:
- They are parents with school age children
- Between the ages of 25-45
- Avid social media followers (according to data collected from AYSO’s marketing dept.)
- Are busy, usually have two working parents
- Usually have more than one child eligible to participate
Now that you have an idea of who they are, you can ask the questions to help gather data on their lifestyle and how they operate. Questions to think about are:
- Where do they shop?
- What activities are they involved in during the week/weekends? What are their goals for their kids?
- What do they expect from youth programs?
All those questions can help inform the next phase: Marketing your Region.
With a specific audience in mind, you can now start implementing some marketing techniques. Keep in mind, this is not an exhaustive list, it is meant to get you thinking. Your ideas are welcome!
- Community Outreach: Grocery stores, schools, community programs, museums, gyms/studios and/or local cafes and restaurants are locations you will find your target audience. Reach out to these places to and ask if you can hang a banner/poster to advertise your Region or if you can set up a booth on specific days to talk to the community about your Region’s programs. As for schools, create flyers for teachers to pass out to students in their weekly parent info packets, look into their newsletter or online announcement system.
- Events: Research local family friendly events and contact the event coordinator to see if you can set up an information booth or support one of the activities/contests. If not, see if they would be willing to let you make an announcement from the event stage and hand out flyers guerilla marketing style to those interested in more information.
- Social Media: Create Region social media pages, including Facebook and Instagram to help build awareness for your Region as well as upcoming activities and events. Encourage your families and friends to “like”, “follow” and share with others.
- Friends and Family: They can be your best ambassadors to spread the word about either being new to the Region or upcoming events. Build a strong team that will be willing to pass out flyers, share messages on social media and volunteer at outreach events to drive awareness and more people to action.
- Public Relations: Reach out to your local media outlets, print, TV and digital, with press releases and/or invites to your events to have them help you get the word out about your Region or upcoming campaigns. Many news outlets, especially print, are short staffed, so composing stories that are print ready are more likely to get printed. For TV, target the community outreach or sports reporters to help spread the word on your need for volunteers and players. Be creative!
Evaluating Your Techniques
This is vitally important to making sure you’re implementing the most effective marketing strategies in your Region. Here are some easy metrics to help you track your success:
- Ask people how they found out about your Region.
- Use Facebook, Instagram and Google Analytics to see what messages are most successful and engaged with as well as how many unique visitors and visits are coming to your website.
- Create unique codes for different types of collateral that people input when registering. Keep track of responses.
- Adjust your techniques based on evaluation.
We also encourage you to follow the AYSO National social media pages and share content on your websites to keep your channels fresh, informative and engaging.
Remember, marketing is an on-going process that helps you identify how you can have a better impact on your audience. As you continue to market, you’ll eventually hone in on what works for your Region. Furthermore, you’ll want to make sure that your Region consistently maintains a positive image to continually draw in participants by listening to feedback, delivering what your Region promises, providing excellent customer service, and remaining transparent.
Remember, our mission to provide world-class soccer programs that enrich children’s lives and to HAVE FUN!