Forum Connect

Calling all communications staff!

  • 1.  Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 7 days ago
    Hi -- In my quest to advance the field of preservation through strategic communications, I want to connect with people in the field who either have a dedicated communications position or spend a significant amount of their time on it. (Not trolling for work, promise! Just researching for some larger initiatives.)

    Are you one of those people, and/or do you know someone who is? Please let me know!

    For this purpose, "communications" includes:

    • Marketing, however you define it
    • PR/media relations
    • Digital outreach -- website, email, social media, blog, podcast, video, etc. 
    • Print materials -- newsletters, brochures, membership materials, direct mail, etc.
    • Overall strategy and messaging -- how you talk about your work
    • Brand identity -- graphic design, photography, etc.
    • Merchandise
    • Anything else you do to engage and mobilize support for your work
    Thanks so much for your help!




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    Cindy Olnick
    Los Angeles, CA
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  • 2.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 7 days ago
    Hey Cindy,
    Compiled a few resources through our channels that may help in your research.
    I, like many people in the field, where many hats at my job ... so in addition to working on engagement/networking programs (such as Forum Connect!), I also am responsible for the marketing of all our resources, programs, events, etc at Forum. I'm happy to chat! I find testing to be my best friend when it comes to figuring out what works/what doesn't (and sometimes it's surprising to me what resonates w. certain groups and not w. others.
    I think one of the biggest challenges is certainly to get across your message and focus amid all the noise out there -- as a general consumer in life I get it. I don't go on my gmail account for a few days and I log on and I have 300+emails and I'm not sure what newsletters I want to read, what companies I want to find out what their latest push is, etc (I usually freeze up and delete a lot bc it stresses me out too much to have a cluttered inbox!)
    I try to really customize messages and send to targeted audiences as best I can...so like for instance here, we have a grants interest list. So I know those people WANT to hear from me when we have a new grant opportunity.
    Colleen

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    Colleen Danz
    Forum Marketing Manager
    National Trust for Historic Preservation
    Washington DC
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  • 3.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 6 days ago
    Thanks so much, Colleen! I really appreciate the insight and resources, especially with all those hats you're wearing. Look forward to chatting later this week.

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    Cindy Olnick
    Cindy Olnick Communications
    Los Angeles, CA
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  • 4.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 6 days ago
    Cindy,
    Unlike most who post here, our organization, the Nanticoke Historic Preservation Alliance is an ALL volunteer 501(c) 3. We own and are restoring Handsell, a National Register listed site in Dorchester County Maryland. As the President and co-founder of this org., I wear a lot of hats, but I spend MOST of my time doing all the things on your list of Marketing, outreach, websites, graphics work, etc. Being an artist helps there, however I've self trained in the social online and website world.

    In just 13 years, starting with a derelict house and $600, we have completed $218,000 in preservation work on the house and raised another $100,000 plus for property improvement and programming, including a documentary film on the African American story of Handsell and building a Native longhouse, work shelter and garden on site.

    Our success, I believe, is in our philosophy to partner with as many other organizations and businesses as possible, or our Trustees to be liaisons to other Boards and to post often (sometimes daily) on social media, write press releases and make the Handsell name a household word in the county and region. From the get-go we made sure we had a consistent, professional graphic look on all marketing material (Hunter green is our color) and we have maintained those images. Other than printing and web fees, we pay nothing for artwork or web design.

    The bottom line, is I think every organization should have a graphic artists or company on their Board, passionate about their mission, willing to do pro bono work. Also younger members who can navigate the world of social media are essential.

    Midge Ingersoll
    Nanticoke Historic Preservation Alliance
    Www.restorehandsell.org
    Www.nanticokeriverjamboree.com
    Midge Ingersoll, Trustee
    Nanticoke Historic Preservation Alliance

    Handsell Historic Site
    4837 Indiantown Rd, Vienna, MD off Rt 331 Exit of Rt 50.

    410-228-7458

    Arrange your group tour at Handsell by emailing us anytime.
    Upcoming Event:  9th annual Nanticoke River Jamboree at Handsell
    Celebrating 350 Years in Dorchester County
























  • 5.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 6 days ago
    Thanks so much, Midge! With all those hats, I doubly appreciate the time you took to share your insight.

    I'm so glad you mentioned graphic design. It's such a critical element in conveying who you are and why you merit support -- and, like other communications, it takes training and skill.

    And HUGE congrats on your progress! It's so inspiring to see the concrete impact you can make with strategic communications.

    Best,
    Cindy


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    Cindy Olnick
    Los Angeles, CA
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  • 6.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 5 days ago
    @Midge Ingersoll to your point about being fully volunteered driven, I wanted to make a plug for an organization I used to volunteer with when I lived in NYC/Chicago. It's called Taproot Foundation and basically, they provide non-profits w. marketing support, brand awareness campaigns, working on final reports, etc. I used to volunteer my marketing/communications skills and worked on various projects for a range of non-profits in my community. I'm not sure where they're located throughout the country, but might be a good resource!
    Thanks,
    Colleen​

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    Colleen Danz
    Forum Marketing Manager
    National Trust for Historic Preservation
    Washington DC
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  • 7.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 5 days ago
    Thanks, Colleen, for mentioning Taproot - a great resource.​

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    Cindy Olnick
    Los Angeles, CA
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  • 8.  RE: Calling all communications staff!

    Posted 5 days ago
    Thanks, Colleen. We will sear h for Taproot Communications in the Maryland area. In 2003, as president of the Historical Society of Moorestown (NJ), I chaired the Tallman Historic Showcase, a historic driven designers schoolhouse that was the final event centered around the efforts to save the 1757 Thomas Tallman house from demolition. Thanks to local marketing company, who did all the work pro bono, the project was a tremendous success. House saved, restored and sold for $1.4 Million. HS raised $90,000. Neighbors were thrilled. I wish more like yourself would help local all volunteer non profits.