The use of social media in promotion
A National Trust case study

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Page 3: The purpose of promotion

Promotion may have a number of purposes depending on the needs of an organisation. For example, it can raise awareness of a brand or business, highlight the benefits or value of its products to attract sales or help to change the image of a firm.

Promotion covers a variety of techniques by which an organisation communicates with its customers and potential customers. These communications may have different forms and content to ensure that the target audience can understand and receive the messages properly.

National Trust 17 Diagram 1AIDA

The AIDA model demonstrates the stages of promotion:

  • Initiating awareness (attention) amongst non-customers or increasing knowledge of new offers for existing customers
  • Generating interest for and creating desire to have the product
  • Finally ensuring action to purchase.

The ultimate aim is to keep customers loyal so that over time they become ‘advocates’ and promote the product to other consumers. Customer recommendation is a very strong form of promotion.

As a business, the National Trust has few direct competitors, but there are many alternative ways for the public to spend their leisure time and money. In addition, recent research has shown that, even when aware of the Trust’s work, few young people considered it as a possible organisation to work for.

The National Trust is therefore focusing on a promotion strategy that applies equally to highlighting what the Trust can offer its visitors and members and to promoting National Trust jobs of all types.

National Trust 17 Image 6The Trust is using digital media and social networking sites such as Facebook to highlight the huge variety of roles it offers. These channels enable the Trust to present practical and personal insight into different job roles, such as skilled professional posts, catering staff or young volunteers, through the use of employee profiles, articles or guest blogs.

Image ©National Trust Images/Paul Harris

National Trust | The use of social media in promotion