Ever had to tell someone you’re not on Facebook OR Twitter and feel like you’ve sprouted two heads judging by the puzzled look you get?
For the 33 million Facebook users, 34 million Twitter tweeters and the 11 million people signed up to LinkedIn in the UK alone, social media is such a big part of every day life, the thought of even 24 hours without it probably sends a shiver down their spine…me included!
But don’t be put off. Once you’ve got to grips with the basics, the right social media channel can actually create shortcuts to help your cooking club grow.
Joining the Twittersphere is a good place to start. It’s completely free and so simple to set up. You simply create an account (Twitter walks you through this process), search for and follow people you are interested in and, if they like you, they follow you back. Messages (tweets) are restricted to just 140 characters so it’s quick and easy to start a conversation and means you won’t spend hours planning content.
Twitter can open a whole load of exciting virtual windows for cooking clubs. It can help you….
1. Make a name for yourself and establish your club in your local community – it could lead to all sorts of exciting new ventures, like businesses who might love what you’re doing and agree to sponsor you for new equipment.
2. Connect with local suppliers who can help you with deals on ingredients – it could save you money and also lead to club visits (particularly fun if you hook up with your farming community!) donations or even guest speakers who can join you for cooking sessions.
3. Promote your events so even more people turn up – local media are also interested in hearing about what schools and clubs are doing to help children and families live healthy lifestyles.
4. Create a personality for your club – if you’ve seen something that’s made you laugh or smile, or even an interesting news story or new research about children’s health, pass it on to your followers by tweeting the link.
5. Connect with parents, family members and friends of the school who may love cooking at home or would like to learn new cooking skills too – you may find some new volunteers to help out at events and club sessions.
6. Make friends with fellow foodies, like local restaurateurs, chefs, and other cooking clubs – seeing what they’re up to can give you new recipe and activity ideas. You can even tweet them for advice on how to follow in their footsteps.
7. Share recipes, advice on healthy eating and tips for cooking to help others get cooking affordable and nutritious meals in your wider community.
The thing to remember is that followers don’t just appear overnight. It can take time to build up your following so try and see each new one as a virtual high-five and watch it grow as you learn. Don’t forget to:
• Promote your club’s Twitter name in the school newsletter, on the website and wherever you can
• Follow us! @Childfoodtrust using the #LetsGetCooking hashtag
Sarah is our Media and PR Support Officer. Email Sarah.