How does IFundWomen empower and support female entrepreneurs? Their strength is in their community. FundWomen, a funding market for women-owned businesses, to support female entrepreneurs as they navigate their businesses. They have identified a powerful marketing channel to help these women bring their visions to life: the digital community.
Read on for a behind-the-scenes look at how IFundWomen integrates their marketing and community building activities to foster the all-round digital space. You will hear directly from Shakivla Todd, Marketing Associate at IFundWomen, and you’ll learn:
- Community tactics for building closer, more lasting relationships with your customers
- How to learn from your community to provide information about your marketing strategy
- Where Shakivla finds inspiration to create social media content for small business audiences ⠀
- How to avoid voice marketing in uncertain times
This post is part of #BufferBrandSpotlight, a social media chain by Buffer that helps grab the attention of people who are helping to build remarkable brands through social media, community building, internal creation use and tell brand stories.
This series was born on Instagram stories, which means you can check out the original interview in our Featured Section found on @Buffer Instagram Profile.
Who are you?
My name is Shakivla Todd and I’m a Marketing Affiliate for IFundWomen. More importantly, I am an outstanding sister, a dope friend and a budding plant mother. IFundWomen is a sponsorship marketplace for women-owned businesses and those who want to support them with capital, coaching and networking. We provide instant access to capital through a premium online fundraising experience, access to small business grants from corporate partners, and coaching business experts on All the topics entrepreneurs need to know and the network of female business owners arouse confidence, increase knowledge and trigger action.
I manage our digital communities through our social media strategy, interact with Slack and e-mail marketing.. I’m also a startup coach and I can coach female entrepreneurs on how to upgrade their social media game – this is one of my favorite parts of my role!
Where are you looking for inspiration for IFundWomen’s social media content?
I spend a lot of time surfing Instagram to learn social content. I’ve always followed Ellevest, R29 Unbotbroken, Free Women, Girlboss, the list goes on. Also, our community is #TeamMemes so our pop culture inspires a lot of my content. I’m also looking for the next thing to be memeized! For example, in general, millennials are re-watching sitcoms Girlfriends of the early 2000s on Netflix. Everyone is talking about it, so I did photo processing from our cast image to promote one of our sponsored programs.
In the end, I would lie if I didn’t say it We take inspiration from testing our competitors. That’s a great tactic!
The first thing I do in the morning is test all the DMs on the platforms. I can do this in my bed, so it’s a good start to the day and I don’t have to worry about it during the workday. I want to respond to any messages and comments within 24 hours, but if it’s a launch date or something important, I check Instagram more often.
On a great day, I scheduled my posts to Buffer. So I will test them to make sure everything is fine. After that, my day was clearly creating and strategizing for future content. I collaborate with our sales, coaching and creative teams to ensure that we consistently market our products, services, events and partnerships. I must make sure everything is reflected in our marketing content calendar.
What advice do you have for brands trying to foster a supportive, inclusive online community?
Don’t deafen your voice. A LOT OF SURPRISES is happening on the land of 2020. You cannot afford to miss it. You have to find a way to solve the problem that is consistent with the brand’s mission, values and voice. That said, don’t just say something to say something. Let’s authenticate and make it work for you. For example, in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death instead of shutting up or posting a black square our response is amplification and support Black women-owned businesses realized that one of the most important actions against racial injustice was to redistribute money to black women-owned businesses.
Don’t deafen your voice. A LOT OF SURPRISES is happening on the land of 2020. You cannot afford to miss it. You have to find a way to solve the problem that is consistent with the brand’s mission, values and voice.
Our community is very clear and clear about what they need, want and love. I love to try different strategies and just watch to see where our community does it. If something goes viral, I continue to create content like that. Our followers are also often in our DM to ask for help to fund their business. Their specific questions fueled my marketing strategy.
Our followers are also often in our DM to ask for help to fund their business. Their specific questions fueled my marketing strategy.
For example, IFundWomen works with companies to develop sponsorship programs for businesses. Over the course of the summer, during the application period for one of our grants, people kept sliding in our DM and asking very specific questions about their grant application. We decided to hold a special seminar on sponsorship writing. To promote this free seminar, I’m actually just taking screenshots of the first slide of the presentation that will be used for the workshop. The post got hot with almost 1000 likes and over 400 people signed up for the workshop. I think it was successful because Instagram post It’s very simple, goes straight to the point and addresses directly the concern our community is facing.
Perform like everyone’s best friend per gram. What does it mean? That means most comments and DM get a very personalized response. I interact with our followers not only on our posts but also on their posts if it appears on our feed. I am usually involved as if our business account is personal. It’s a great tactic for beating algorithms, but also for building community and brand trust.
Perform like everyone’s best friend per gram.
I love reading Buffer, Later, Hootsuite and Social Media Today blogs. Surfing TikTok and Twitter is also great for the brain. I think most of the trends begin in those two applications. Shamelessly, I took what I learned on the internet and put it into a series of “trends to keep up” in my newsletter, Trends with Shak.
What is your favorite IFundWomen partnership Up to now and why?
The Funding Journey is a series of IGTV programs where we interview successful founders on a long, sometimes complex, journey to get funding for their businesses. Those are my favorites because:
- I have to put on my true maker hat and start building something from start to finish.
- Most of the founders we interviewed come from HUGE brands. That means great reach for us as a brand plus our community LOVE to hear from the brands they love Black Girl sunscreen, Lively, and Leader.
We hope this interview with Shakivla will help you initiate or duplicate your social media efforts. You can follow her journey on Instagram here!
Do you have any questions for Shakivla? Please answer your questions for the Twitter post below and Shakivla or someone from the Buffer team will get in touch with them as soon as possible.