The BSA will be providing Facebook Geofencing capabilities for our units this fall. If you have a specific event that you want to promote, please send the name of the event, your unit number, and the date, time, and location of the event to our District Executive, Jim Bollback (firstname.lastname@example.org). You need to allow about 3 weeks lead time so the message can run for ten days prior to the event.
Using event geofencing through Facebook to support recruitment showed exciting results in the last Cub Scout recruitment season. On average, geofenced units recruited +7.43% more new Cub Scouts than they did the previous year. Whereas non-fenced units within those same councils were down an average of -9.12% in new Cub Scouts recruited.
What is Geofencing?
Geofencing is a method of geographically targeting a specific audience using Facebook. In this case, we first set up an event in Facebook to feature a “Join Scouting” night. Once the Facebook event is set up, you can set up a geofence for the event and “boost” it. This means paying a fee within Facebook so that members of your target audience who enter into the geographical area in the real world while they are also on Facebook are shown the event information.
In the example of a joining event where we want to reach parents, we set up an event geofence in Facebook with a 1-2 mile radius around the school where the joining night is scheduled. When a parent enters that area, they receive a notification on their Facebook page about the event. It’s easy. It’s hyper local, and it doesn’t rely on someone else passing out fliers or other material.
- Geofenced events held at schools performed the best, followed by events held at parks/community venues, followed finally by events at churches.
- Church-based recruiting events did not perform as well as school-based recruiting events.
- Single-unit events performed better than events with multiple units participating (e.g. events in parks, etc.).
Frequently Asked Questions:
- Does this replace the recruitment flier?
- No. This is simply one additional tactic to strengthen your recruitment efforts.
- Can I do this with any Facebook page?
- No. You will need to have an ‘organization’ page, not a personal Facebook page. Organizational pages have more tools to use for communication and marketing.
- Can I geofence multiple locations?
- Yes, you can.
- Can I geofence one location and have the event at a different location?
- What about timing? How far out should I schedule the geofence?
- Up to 14 days. Time it with your flier distribution.
- Do I need permission to geofence a location, such as a school?
- No. You are simply extending a calendar invitation to those who might be interested in attending.
- How else could I use this tactic?
- Use it to help promote any scheduled event, such as fundraising events, festivals, day camp, resident camp, popcorn sales. The possibilities are endless!