By: Alexa Viramontes, Orange County DCSS
Orange County Department of Child Support Services (Orange County DCSS) is also participating in the federally funded Digital Media Marketing Grant (see previous article). The Orange County DCSS team took a digital marketing approach to try to reach underserved communities within their county planning an innovative digital media campaign. They deployed 30-second audio-visual ads on streaming services iHeartRadio and Pandora to seven targeted zip codes. These were determined based on Census data overlapped with the current caseload to allow them to identify areas likely to have concentrated amounts of single-parent households who had not yet received child support services. The ads were brief and sent the simple message of, “We’re here to help,” along with a phone number which connected directly to a caseworker who was ready to answer questions and assist in the child support process. In addition, a visual ad banner displayed a link to the Orange County DCSS website which listeners could click on to access more information on their services. To gauge ad reach and effectiveness, they surveyed customers during the case opening phase as well as tracking the number of calls received on the caseworker-direct line which listeners received in the ad.
Through these evaluation methods, they learned that most of their customers had heard of the department by means other than the audio-visual ads. Many were referred by their attorneys or via referrals from family or friends. This information led to the redesign of an existing long running advertisement in the Orange County Lawyer magazine as well as the department’s exploration of outreach opportunities which leverage the help of community leaders and current customers to raise awareness and refer friends and family to child support services.
Additionally, Orange County DCSS plans to broaden dissemination strategies to include ads across multiple social media platforms and radio stations in addition to continuing audio-visual ad deployment through iHeartRadio and Pandora. To do this, the department will work with a marketing firm to develop ads on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat with the goal of reaching a wider audience scope. The department will continue to evolve and refine marketing strategies in response to outcomes of previous and current methods with the intent of sharing their findings and provide services to those in need.
Stay tuned for the February newsletter for more updates about San Diego and Sacramento’s digital marketing grants!