All too often our members don’t know the organization to which they belong. We send them emails and mailings that they delete. We invite them to membership meetings they don’t attend. We post information on our websites which they don’t view.

They do know their co-workers and often friend or follow them on social media. By turning your activist members into brand promoters, your union can expand its reach and engage members you currently are not reaching.

Use Hashtags

Make it easy for members to share about your organization using a unique hashtag with your organization’s name. #UnionName #UnionNameRally #UnionNameStrong. Encourage staff and activist members to use the designated hashtag for any organizational events. Adding hashtags with photos and updates on Twitter and Facebook will expand your organizations reach with their co-workers.

Analyze Your Reach

Hashtags are searchable and will provide you with additional metrics about your organizational reach. In addition to the Insights section of your Facebook page and Twitter Analytics there are multiple sites that will give you critical data about the reach, impressions and most influential people using your hashtags. Some of these sites require a fee while others provide limited free data. Check out and for examples.

Acknowledge Your Activists

Sharing, liking, favoriting and retweeting your activist members’ posts and photos on your social media sites will provide positive reinforcement, encouraging them to do it more often.

Give special shout-outs to your most influential members who participate. Using analytics mentioned above will show who these members are and the kind of reach they have to help get your message out.

Put Members in Charge

After analyzing the use of organizational branding in a few events, consider inviting in your most active members to brainstorm other ways they can help spread your organization’s brand in social media.

Do you have some worksites or parts of the state where you reach very few members? Consider making an activist member from that area an organizational promoter tasked with posting, sharing or retweeting something from the organization on a regular basis.

Sometimes the most influential person in a location isn’t an officer or building rep. Use your analytics to find out who the influentials are in your organization. Then recruit them to help build branding awareness.