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AfterPlogging on a Sunday afternoon: Why you should show your community some love

Date Posted: 10 August, 2018
AfterPlogging on a Sunday afternoon: Why you should show your community some love

The latest Scandi trend to reach our shores has nothing to do with crime dramas or living your life by some unpronounceable concept. Nope, what we’ve got instead is a combination of running while picking up rubbish, otherwise known as plogging.

It’s no secret that runners love heading out in their hordes and getting a community vibe going, so the appeal to plogging is clear. To make the most out of the trend, we recently set out with a crew of fans of our bone conduction headphone brand, AfterShokz, along with some key influencers to clean up the grassy paths of Regents Park.

But why exactly does the community vibe resonate so strongly with runners? And how did we harness this for our event? For a little insight into the world of plogging, read on below.

The importance of communities

Whether running marathons or as part of a local team, the social aspect to running is a major attraction, as Canadian ultra runner Kara Leinweber has recently pointed out.

As mentioned in our guide to social media for consumer tech brands, working with your community should be a key part of your communications strategy. Investing in your fanbase is a relatively easy but powerful way of promoting your brand and building that relationship with your audience.

But how exactly should you be taking advantage of this?

Integrate it as part of a wider strategy

Although social media is a key part of our work with AfterShokz, we also cover influencer marketing and PR for the brand. Making sure the AfterPloggerz event benefited all of our services was a primary aim, with a particular focus on our influencer marketing. As such, we decided to invite UK running influencer and coach Ben Parkes to lead the troops.

Many of us love a run through the park, though we got Ben involved both for his expertise and his engaged social following. We’d worked with Ben to promote AfterShokz around the London Marathon, and knew he could head up our team of runners for the route through Regents Park.

Ben also created content for his Instagram page to promote our plogging outing and the AfterShokz brand to his audience. Fitting our brief perfectly, his stories were watched by 10% of his followers (way above the 4.71% average reach for lifestyle influencers recorded by Instagram analytics company Dash Hudson earlier this year), and the competition post he ran performed 540% better than any of his 12 most recent posts. Not bad going for a day’s work!

Keep it simple

For our event, we equipped our troop with litter pickers, gloves, branded t shirts, a pair of AfterShokz headphones and a rubbish bag. The rest was left down to them.

This doesn’t mean you can’t scale your events up however. Depending on the size of your community and exactly what you want from it, your events can be as big or small as you like.

Give your community a chance to shine

Encouraging your fans is a sure fire way to get them talking passionately about your running tech brand. Acknowledging their support and giving them a platform helps turn them from distant admirers into a team of effective influencers on the ground.

Inviting our plogging crew to get involved, we provided the opportunity to produce content about a brand they love. In the end, 75% of attendees posted on Instagram during the event, sparking conversations on their own channels about the environment and benefits of plogging.

So what was the end result?

Apart from a far cleaner Regents Park, the conversation sparked by the event certainly helped position AfterShokz as one of the brands leading the way in sustainable running amongst our community. More importantly however, it strengthened our links with our audience, giving something back for their support and invigorating them to keep coming back for more.

To make sure we keep that community spirit going, this certainly won’t be the last time we organise an event to keep our fanbase feeling involved. Watch this space for the next entry on our outings with the AfterShokz crew…


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Like this? Great! Next, check out: Ranieri’s introductory guide to influencer marketing