BY ERIC DIAZ, Principal, DK Web Consulting

Hector Herrera is a man with a plan. As the Director of Marketing and Communications at the Florida State Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (FSHCC), his goal is to expand awareness of their mission to promote the economic advancement of Florida’s Hispanic community. The FSHCC was founded in 2000, boasts an audience of 80,000 Florida businesses, employs 5 fulltime South Floridians, and has corporate partnerships that include Citibank, Ford, Pfizer, and Sprint to name a few.

Florida State Hispanic Chamber of Commerce LogoIn September, DK had a chance to speak with Mr. Herrera about the FSHCC’s current social media presence and their strategy to expand. Our overall objective was to get in the head of a social media campaign manager for a large non profit to better understand how they manage their campaign. Mr. Herrera explained that traditionally the FSHCC’s outreach efforts included networking events, education programs, and an e-Newsletter, but that lately it has been primarily focused on their social media campaign.

The FSHCC has several social media accounts, all with a solid following. They have found the most success with Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. However, they are also starting to see LinkedIn as an effective tool. For maintaining these accounts they have used the social media management tool Hootsuite to help them organize a calendar of regular postings.

The FSHCC has experienced success using Facebook as their primary means of communication with members. Their Facebook page currently has 201 fans. To facilitate growth, the FSHCC has built a custom landing page to increase the conversion rate of potential new fans and members. Links to their growing video collection can be found here as well.

Mr. Herrera has found Twitter to be an excellent tool to communicate and post business opportunities and announcements for their followers. Mr. Herrera posts messages from their partners such as a large university recently asking them to announce an RFP to their members. They also use Twitterfeed to deliver filtered relevant content to their followers. The FSHCC Twitter page has 204 active followers today. Most of their growth has come from proactively seeking out and following the Twitter ID’s of active and potential FSHCC members. Mr. Herrera proudly mentioned that this was done manually to ensure the high quality that is sometimes lacking when using Twitter software.

The growing YouTube video collection has been impressive. In the last week and a half a number of new videos have been posted with topics ranging from a clip titled, “FSHCC Member in Action” to a video named, “Florida’s Leading Editorial Boards Weigh In.” Usage of their growing content is at 2,676 total views.

The FSHCC has recently started outreach efforts on LinkedIn. Currently their LinkedIn group has a small but rapidly growing member base (nearly 30 members registered in the first month) but they are confident that it will soon provide a forum for relevant discussion due to its more professional audience.

Mr. Herrera knows that while a solid social media following is good, more must be done to make it a truly effective outreach tool. One of the keys to their growth strategy is maintaining a 100% response rate to social media inquiries and comments. This helps ensure a dialogue between the FSHCC and its partners, members, and potential members. A posting schedule ensures predictability in their outreach avoiding ad-hoc posting habits seen by many other organizations.

The other major growth strategy is a push for syndicated video content. They will use videos syndicated by other sites to drive traffic to each of their social media profiles. Furthermore, they will begin adding bilingual content. Currently, all communication is done in English however that will change in the next few months as more Spanish content will be published. For example, in October – November a breast cancer awareness program will be launched targeting Hispanic women. This campaign will include Spanish language outreach initiatives.

The FSHCC social media campaign will be one to watch in 2011 as Mr. Herrera anxiously pushes their fans and followers over the 1,000 mark. See all of the FSHCC social media campaign here:

In addition to his firm, Mr. Diaz publishes the blog Social Media Spanish.

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