Social Spotlight: The Trevor Project and how to establish, evolve and empower your community
Welcome to the Social Spotlight, where we dive deep into what we love about a brand’s approach to a specific social campaign. From strategy through execution and results, we’ll examine what makes the best brands on social tick — and leave you with some key takeaways to consider for your own brand’s social strategy.
Like many organizations have in 2020, the Trevor Project has had to be agile in its messaging and digital programming to make up for loss of in-person touchpoints with its audience during the global pandemic. An organization dedicated to crisis intervention and suicide prevention resources for LGBTQ+ youth, the Trevor Project works diligently to create virtual and IRL communities for young people who feel they don’t otherwise have the support they need as they come out or embrace their full selves. The isolation many LGBTQ+ feel has been exacerbated by the mandated quarantine of COVID times, but the Trevor Project has found even more effective ways to connect with the individuals and groups most in need of its services through social media.
What you can learn
1. Reimagine your connection points.
Like many organizations that serve the LGBTQ+ community, the Trevor Project has participated and supported Pride Month activities such as parades in the past. Without the ability to be a part of in-person celebrations in 2020, the org turned instead to creating a virtual celebration of Pride and anchored it with a featured video. But one video does not make a community celebration, so Trevor Project created a custom filter, available on its website, that gives everyone the ability to make their own photos look like those in the hero video.
- Getting started: If you’ve felt that the COVID-19 shutdown has made it difficult to feel connected to your community, it may be helpful to revisit the strategic tenets of your past in-person events to remind yourself of what the overall brand goals of the event were, and apply those same goals to your social strategy. For instance, if your goal for a live event was to give your brand audience a place to show off their individuality, prioritize creating a virtual space for them to do the same.
The parades and festivals may be cancelled this year, but Pride is not! I took the money I would have used on vodka sodas and overpriced ride shares and donated to @TrevorProject. #PrideEverywhere! ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🤎🖤 pic.twitter.com/HFvXW2i3ka
— Ryan Aguirre (@aguirreryan) May 27, 2020
Find a purpose to connect people.
The Trevor Project knows that its audience is by nature inclined to support others who have been marginalized, so the recent social uprising for racial justice enabled the organization to rally its resources and followers around the intersectional causes that align with its own. By creating content in support of Black Lives Matter and Black LGBTQ+ youth, the Trevor Project creates community around an actionable cause.
- Getting started: Spend some time evaluating your organization’s values and identify opportunities to support overlapping or subset groups within your own audience. Creating intersectional content that encourages different groups to virtually link arms with each other in a show of mutual support will not only widen the audience for your content, but create a shared sense of purpose that promotes community growth.
We're here for you 🌈✊🏾✊🏽✊🏿
Reach out to us 24/7 at: 866.488.7386 or text/chat at https://t.co/hxtScqt870 📲
🎨 art by DOM&INK 🎨#lgbtq #blm #pride pic.twitter.com/dKS6M8pLKh
— The Trevor Project (@TrevorProject) June 2, 2020
3. Change the conversation for the better.
The Trevor Project exists in the first place because its audience of at-risk LGBTQ+ youth often feel like outsiders, without the support of others who may be feeling the same way. By normalizing the difficult feelings and specific challenges of its audience, the org created a community where none existed for many of its followers. That’s a powerful thing.
- Getting started: Whether you’re a nonprofit, a small B2B company or a large B2C brand, you know your audience–their likes and dislikes, of course, but also the pain points and struggles they share. Creating content that not only names those struggles, but invites your audience to form community around them within the “safe space” of your brand, demonstrates your understanding of their needs and empathy for them as individuals and groups.
You matter 💙 If you're in crisis, we're here 24/7 to support you at: 866.488.7386 or text/chat https://t.co/hxtScqt870 📲
🎨 art by @sheisrecovering 🎨#lgbtq #trans pic.twitter.com/mFMoueZjPS
— The Trevor Project (@TrevorProject) June 24, 2020
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