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A Public Relations Campaign for 

Alamance County Cooperative Extension     

  Written and Produced by: 

Cooperative Communications    Erin Bucksbaum  Logan Dunn  Emily Swapp  Alex MacKintosh                                          Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for  COM 452, Fall 2012

 


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Table of Contents  I. Title Page……………………………………………………………….……………1 II. Table of Contents……………………………………………………………………2 III. Introduction………………………………………………………………………….4 IV. Background………………………………………………………………………….7 V. Current Situation……………………………………………………………….……20 VI. Research……………………………………………………………………………..31 VII.

Plans, Goals Objectives……………………………………………………………...49

VIII.

Strategies……………………………………………………………………………..55

IX. Tactics………………………………………………………………………………..65 X. Evaluation……………………………………………………………………………75 XI. Budget…………………………..……………………………………………………86 XII.

Timetable…………………………………………………………………………….89

XIII.

Concluion & Summary………………………………………….……………….…106

XIV. Appendix A……………………………………………………..…………………..107 XV.

Appendix B…………………………………………………..………..……………108

XVI. Appendix C…………………………………………………………………………110 XVII. Appendix D…………………………………………………………………………116 XVIII. Appendix E………………………………………………………..………………..121 XIX. Appendix F…………………………………………………………..……………..122 XX.

Appendix G……………………………………………………….………………..123

XXI. Appendix H……………………………………………………….………………..124

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 3   XXII. Appendix I………………………………………………..……….………………..125 XXIII. Appendix J……………………………………………………..…………………..126 XXIV. Appendix K…………………………………………………………..…………….127 XXV. Appendix L…………………………………………………………...…………….128

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION III. INTRODUCTION

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 5   INTRODUCTION       

This book contains a comprehensive strategic communications awareness campaign. 

This booklet consists of a background section; a current situation; a research section; a  plans, goals, and objectives; a strategy section; a tactics section; an evaluation section; a  timetable section; a budget section a conclusion and appendices. This book and the sections  within it were written and developed with the purpose of serving as a campaign guide for  our client, Alamance County Cooperative Extension. This book has been created for the  purpose of being used by and studied by employees of Alamance County Cooperative  Extension in order for them to produce a countywide awareness campaign.   

Cooperative Extension is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that functions as a 

nation‐wide program. The Alamance County branch of Cooperative Extension was founded  in North Carolina in 1913.  The mission of North Carolina Cooperative Extension is to  “partner with communities to deliver education and technology that enriches the lives, land  and economy of North Carolinians”. The Alamance County Cooperative Extension Branch  works with North Carolina A&T University and North Carolina State University to provide  its citizens and community members with research based information in the areas of:  Agriculture & Horticulture, Environment, Forestry, Health & Nutrition, Family & Home,  Lawn & Garden and Youth Development.    

Our group’s main contact at Cooperative Extension was Beth Davis, the 4‐H Youth 

Development group leader for Cooperative Extension. We also worked closely with Roger  Cobb, the County Extension Supervisor. Both members of the Alamance County  Cooperative Extension staff have provided us with insights and large amounts of useful 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 6   information, contained in this campaign. We appreciate the guidance both Beth and Roger  have provided us throughout the entire campaign process.    

Our campaign team consists of four senior Elon University students, all graduating 

in May of 2012. Our team members and their titles are as follows:   

Erin Bucksbaum – Account Manager 

 

Logan Dunn – Creative Director 

 

Alexander MacKintosh – Research Coordinator 

 

Emily Swapp – Communications Coordinator

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION IV. BACKGROUND

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The Alamance County Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit organization with branches in almost every state. The organization is designed to provide citizens with research-based information, which will help them, improve the quality of their lives. Cooperative Extension exists in partnership with each state’s designated land-grant universities. In North Carolina, the universities that partner with Cooperative Extension are North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T University. At the Alamance County Cooperative Extension branch, the educational offerings are in the areas of agriculture and food, home and family, the environment, community economic development, and 4-H. The Alamance County Cooperative Extension is a relatively small branch, with eight fulltime employees. The employees at Cooperative Extension work together with members of the community to provide multiple clubs, classes and informational resources at no or minimal cost to members of the Alamance County community. Cooperative Extension is primarily funded by a combination of income from both the state, and local government budgets. However, the organization also receives funding from donations, grants and sponsors. Currently, finding additional sources of funding is not one of the Alamance County Cooperative Extension’s primary goals. The combination of government funding and fundraising efforts from a now-retired supervisor that secured a large amount of incoming donations for several years are used to maintain its current programs. Cooperative Extension faces some competition for participation and engagement of community members in Alamance County, especially in the areas of weight loss assistance, farming and gardening assistance and youth development programs.

 


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B. PURPOSE & OBJECTIVES The Alamance County Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit organization that aims to deliver education and technology that will enrich the lives, land and economy of the community members of Alamance County. The research-based information it provides is offered via several programs and events targeted at both children and adults in the area. Among the programs Cooperative Extension offers is 4-H, a nation-wide youth development organization that encourages kids to learn by being involved in different types of programs. Cooperative Extension’s objectives are to provide an alternative source to the Internet by teaching individuals skills they can use in their everyday lives and by teaching kids valuable horticultural skills. The organization strives to ensure that the citizens of Alamance County have access to the agricultural information and technology it needs. Cooperative Extension tries to fulfill its objective of delivering an education in agricultural issues to the citizens of Alamance County by developing programs based on environmental scanning and research, and then offering educational programs, and hands-on experiences to the community based on that information.

 


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C. COMPOSITION The Alamance County Cooperative Extension is a small branch of the national organization - staffed by only eight paid employees. Many of the people who assist Cooperative Extension in running its programs are members of the community who work voluntarily. In addition to its paid staff and volunteers, the Cooperative Extension also relies on several committees, including those at North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T University, to help ensure it meets its main objective: providing accurate, research-based, educational advice and programs to the members of Alamance County. Below is the list of personnel for the Alamance County Cooperative Extension: ●

Roger Cobb: County Extension Director – Provides research-based knowledge on field crops, tobacco, soybeans, corn, small grains, dairy, pesticide coordinator, pond weed identification and control, and turf.

Daniel Campeau: Area Specialized Agent – Agriculture; specializes in research-based knowledge about poultry

Mark Danieley: Extension Agent, Agriculture – Horticulture; provides research-based knowledge on landscape and gardening

Beth Davis: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development – 4-H Club Organization and maintenance; coordinator for special interest programs, school enrichment programs, and 4-H Camp. Also responsible for leadership development, including youth and volunteers.

Beverly Jenkins: County Extension Administrative Secretary – Receptionist, typist, computer operator, office machine operator, and file clerk.

Laurie Newlin: County Extension Secretary – Receptionist, typist, computer operator, office machine operator, and file clerk.

 


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Jessica Oswald: Extension Agent, Family and Consumer Sciences – Registered dietitian with NC Cooperative Extension; specializes in nutrition, food safety, and health and wellness.

Christine Stecker: Horticulture Technician – Assists with landscape and gardening

The following is a list of committees that work to guide Cooperative Extension and ensure it is providing the best services possible ●

The County Advisory Leadership System: review board of stakeholders who discuss program issues related to the North Carolina Cooperative Extension

Dairy Specialized Committee: provide assistance for dairy farmers when troubleshooting farming issues and in need of specialized farming related information

Field Crops Specialized Committee: provide assistance for field crop farmers when troubleshooting farming issues and in need of specialized farming related information

Commercial Horticulture Specialized Committee: provide assistance for commercial farmers when troubleshooting farming issues and in need of specialized farming related information

Buster Sykes Demonstration Farm Specialized Committee: provide assistance for demonstration farmers when troubleshooting farming issues and in need of specialized farming related information

ECA Executive Committee: members volunteer in many types of volunteer projects to help enhance local clubs, the county and community

4-H Advisory Board: Seeks to empower Alamance County youth to achieve their fullest potential by strengthening youth-adult partnerships, and planning and implementing innovative positive youth development programs

 


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Livestock Specialized Committee: provide assistance for livestock farmers when troubleshooting farming issues and in need of specialized farming related information

Voluntary Agricultural District: promote agricultural values and the general welfare of the county and increase identity and pride in the agricultural community and its way of life; encourage economic and financial health of agriculture and increase protection from non-farming development and other negative impacts on properly managed farms.

Consumer Horticulture Specialized Committee: provide assistance for gardeners when troubleshooting gardening issues and in need of specialized gardening related information

 


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D. RELEVANT PUBLICS Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit organization with a goal of providing educational programming, based off of research-based information to North Carolinians looking to gain knowledge that will help them improve the local economy and environment. The Alamance County Cooperative Extension targets almost all demographics of the surrounding community. Because of the wide range of programs and services Cooperative Extension offers, it aims to reach almost all demographics in the Alamance community. Since it is unlikely to reach all Alamance County members with a campaign, the publics were narrowed down to those outlets that would have the greatest impact on Cooperative Extension’s relevant publics, including local businesses, farmers markets and local media outlets. Targeting these specific factions of the population will help Cooperative Extension be more specific in creating tactics, and it will be a more effective way to reach a broader scope of community members, rather than if the campaign were designed to target a large demographic. On a larger scale, the Susan G. Komen Foundation has used partnerships with local businesses, and media outlets to effectively spread information about its mission and goals. Through these partnerships it has spread awareness among a large demographic. Through this campaign, we are hoping to achieve these results on a local scale for Cooperative Extension.

Local Media- Local media are outlets that are well established in the community and already have a large following within the county. Many people in Alamance County rely on local sources such as the Burlington Times News, and News 14 for their local news. Since the Alamance County Cooperative Extension is a small branch, it does not have enough employees to effectively reach all of its publics. The local media are important to the campaign because they

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 14   have the ability to reach a wide range of the Alamance population. In order to draw more people to Cooperative Extension, the local media will be a valuable tool to help inform people of its programs and services.

Local Businesses - For the purpose of this campaign, local businesses are defined as those that value helping and interacting with the community. Partnering with these businesses is an effective way to reach the larger demographic. These partnerships will allow Cooperative Extension’s to get its name out into the community through the places that people frequent.

Farmers Market Vendors- Cooperative Extension offers a wide range of resources for farmers and those who run small agricultural businesses. As part of this campaign, more members of this population need to be introduced to Cooperative Extension. It will be most effective to reach them where they already are, by attending farmers markets and direct interaction with the vendors.

 


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E. FUNDING Cooperative Extension is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The primary funding for Cooperative Extension of Alamance County comes from local and state government resources. The amount of funding Cooperative Extension receives is based off the amount of participation and relevance it has in the community. The organization also receives funding via donations, sponsorship, fundraising (see below for specific breakdowns). The 2011 operating budget for all Cooperative Extension programs in Alamance County was $507,611.

The government-provided budget is divided as follows: • $252,48 from Federal and State budget. • $254,963 from County budget.

While the staff at the Alamance County Cooperative Extension was unable to provide the exact breakdown of specific donation amounts, we know that the current sources of funding are provided by:

 

North Carolina State University

Federal, state and local money

United Way

North Carolina A&T

Grants from the State of North Carolina

Private donations

Foundations


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 16   Unfortunately, the Alamance County Cooperative Extension does not have records of specific amounts of money provided by the above contributors available at this time. To better help with future campaign planning we would suggest that Cooperative Extension begin keeping thorough documentation of its funding sources because it may impact campaign strategies. Due to the fundraising efforts of a previous supervisor, Cooperative Extension is currently financially stable and has no restrictions on operating abilities due to financial limitations. Due to a decrease in participation, funding from the county reduced Cooperative Extensions budget from $305,289 in 2011 to $254,963 in 2012.

 


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F. COMPETITIVE FRAME The Alamance County Cooperative Extension competes with other organizations in the community in the following categories: weight loss programs, youth development organizations and farm and garden assistance.

Weight Loss Programs Direct Competitors for Weight Loss •

Healthy Alamance- This local nonprofit organization strives to provide the community with information about health and fitness, and provides free information and discounted exercise classes.

Online Health Resources (such as the Mayo Clinic) – These resources provide instant health and fitness information at no cost.

Fitness and Health Magazines (Clean Eating Magazine, Women’s Health, Cooking Light, etc.)- These magazines provide nutritional and fitness related information at a low cost and are easily accessible.

Indirect Competitors for Weight Loss • Curves (Gym)- This women’s only gym focuses on a comprehensive weight loss approach and provides customers with nutritional and fitness based information as part of their membership.

Cooperative Extension provides information on weight loss and fitness at no cost to the public. The organization offers free recipes and brochures to help get families started on a path to better living. Direct competitors to the services it provides are those resources that are also at

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 18   minimal cost and are easily accessible within the Alamance Community. Indirect competitors to its weight loss services are those that cost substantially more but that may provide more research-based information and guidance.

Youth development Direct Competitors for Youth Development • The Salvation Army, Boys and Girls Club- Provides free after-school care and programs for kids from low-income families • Old North State Council, Boy Scouts of America • Youth Enrichment Series, Inc.- offers in-school professional development similar to the classroom programs run by Cooperative Extension. Indirect Competitors for Youth Development •

Alamance County Youth Athletics Program- Provides kids with a safe place to learn sports, and stay active after school.

YMCA – Provides after-school services and programs for kids at a reasonable cost.

Other local youth athletic programs

In addition to the 4-H program run by Cooperative Extension, it also offers classroom instruction. Both programs come at no or minimal cost. The organization provides a safe and educational alternative for afterschool and weekend activities, as well as supplemental classroom lessons. Direct competitors to the programs offered are those programs that also offer free programs for children. Indirect competitors offer afterschool and weekend programs, but at a fee. In the effort to reach out to more of Alamance County, youth development programs are also

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 19   potential partners. Some of these organizations have expressed interest in working with Cooperative Extension and this can be perused in the future.

Farm and Garden Assistance Direct Competitors in Farm and Garden Assistance • Lowes- provides free information about home and garden projects, as well as on site information about tools and supplies needed to complete them Indirect Competitors in Farm and Garden Assistance • Farm Bureau of North Carolina- free resource for farming information • All local fertilizer, seed and farm supply vendors • Online gardening sources- Provide free and easily accessible information about farming and gardening • Farm and garden magazines (Home and Garden, Progressive Farmer, Elite Farmer, etc.)Provide readily accessible information about agriculture and gardening

Cooperative Extension provides both free and personalized help with farming and gardening. The organization offers a wide range of research-based information at no cost and is available via phone, email or direct inquiry. It also has a gardening club and will send staff members to your home or farm to help analyze and plan for your specific space or problem. The direct competitors in farm and garden assistance are those that can also provide free and personalized help. Indirect competitors are those that are also free or low-cost but are unable to offer the personalization that Cooperative Extension can.

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION V. CURRENT SITUATION

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Cooperative Extension is an organization that has a long history in Alamance County. Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit organization that utilizes its partnerships with local, state, and federal governments to provide information generated by public universities to all citizens. The partnerships that Cooperative Extension has with the government allows it to provide all of its staff members with research-based training and information that it can teach to its organization participants. The relationship that the Alamance County branch of Cooperative Extension has with the community has many strengths and weaknesses. For example, Alamance County Cooperative Extension is successful in its funding efforts as it has a good relationship and reputation with the local government. However, Cooperative Extension has been unsuccessful in reaching community members and creating awareness about itself. Those who know what Cooperative Extension see it in a positive light; nevertheless, it has been a challenge to spread information about itself to community members. Cooperative Extension would like to become the foremost agricultural resource in Alamance County. It is Cooperative Extension’s goal to have people come to it when they have questions about farming, gardening, and local foods. The organization would also like to see an increase in program participation. With careful planning and staff cooperation, we can create a campaign plan that will give Cooperative Extension the exposure it desires.

 


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B. DEVELOPMENT Cooperative Extension was first created in 1862, when the Morrill Act was enacted to generate funds to create agricultural programs in higher education. With this act, North Carolina State University was provided with funds to work with agricultural programs. In 1890, a second Morrill Act was passed, extending the funds to include African Americans, and from that North Carolina A&T was also funded to work with agricultural programs. Both of these public institutions have had a desire to continue expanding upon agricultural research and have developed impressive research facilities. In 1914, the Smith-Lever Act provided the push to create the North Carolina Agricultural Extension Services, or what is today known as Cooperative Extension. The Cooperative Extension program began as a partnership between the local, state, and federal governments. Its goal has always been to provide people with learning opportunities based on research. Cooperative Extension was also designed to give people practical knowledge and help them improve their agricultural endeavors. Today, researchers and extension specialists at NC State and NC A&T train field specialists at local extension centers so that the organization remains up-to-date with the latest research. Currently, there are branches of Cooperative Extension centers in all of North Carolina’s 100 counties. Each Cooperative Extension center customizes its programs to the specific needs of each county. The Cooperative Extension program in Alamance County has been operating since 1913. The goals of this branch are to help make small farms more profitable, and to make sure food produced is safe to eat. Some of the programs that Cooperative Extension offers are the Master Gardener programs, which are the organization’s most popular program, creating a community of gardeners in the area. There are also the Voluntary Agricultural District programs –which

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 23   strive to save farmland - and ServSafe- a program that monitors food distribution and promotes healthier and safer food options. The Cooperative Extension program in Alamance County has made little communication efforts to reach out to the community. The biggest improvements that Cooperative Extension has made recently are adding to its website a chat window for easy communication, and a Facebook page. Cooperative Extension also relies heavily on email to send information about upcoming programs, organization news and fundraising letters. Cooperative Extension’s newfound use of technology has helped it become more accessible as a resource to the community, and it hopes to continue growing its online presence and creating a strong bond with its audience.

 


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C. CURRENT POSITION Since the Alamance County Cooperative Extension is partially funded by the county government, it is crucial to maintain a good relationship with local officials and organizations. Cooperative Extension operates in a unique situation, as large portion of its budget for staff salaries and new programs is determined by how many community members use its services. The more participation and interaction it receives from the local community, the more successful Cooperative Extensions efforts will be, and the larger its funding and budget will be. Alamance County Cooperative Extension has struggled to raise awareness of who it is as an organization and what it does, with community members. Cooperative Extension is a great resource for the community members who are aware of it – as these people are already aware of what information Cooperative Extension has to offer and how to can go about finding it. However, it has been difficult for Cooperative Extension to spread awareness about itself to community members who do not know what it is. Cooperative Extension is also competing with search engines. Popular search engines like Google provide answers and information almost instantly and are hard to compete with – Cooperative Extension must work to prove its importance within the community and the unique benefits it offers. Cooperative Extension has also struggled to gain consistent presence in the local media. It does not currently have a strong relationship with local media outlets. This has made it difficult for the organization to raise awareness on a broad scale. In the past, Cooperative Extension has received coverage from The Burlington Times News and WBAG (AM station) but neither has had a large effect on program participation.

 


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D. DIRECTION The biggest problem that Cooperative Extension faces is that the people of Alamance County- who it aims to serve- do not know what Cooperative Extension is or what it has to offer. The citizens of Alamance County do not see the organization as the research-based information resource that it is. Cooperative Extension is seen as a nonprofit that works closely with farmers. The information that Cooperative Extension provides is free, research-based, and much more personalized information than the Internet. A secondary issue that Cooperative Extension is facing is how to use technology in order to become a more relevant information source. Today, people want answers to their questions immediately. Cooperative Extension mentions that Google is one of its competitors – because Google can answer any question people have within seconds. Because Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit organization, it does not have as much access to the best forms of technology, and therefore the staff do not focus much of their efforts in this area. Cooperative Extension must figure out how to reach its publics in a timely and fast manner, while still playing off of the idea that the information it offers is more personal than what its competitors (i.e. Google) can offer. Nevertheless, the issue of optimizing technology and social media comes down to staffing and training. If Cooperative Extension had a member of its staff trained in social media, it would be more successful with technology. Once Cooperative Extension understands the realm of possibilities social media offers, it will be more likely to utilize social media and train someone on its staff to maintain social media consistently. However, additional employees are not available to Cooperative Extension due to the budget. We plan to work with current Cooperative Extension employees to teach them how to work with social media and become

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 26   more tech savvy, so that when community members reach out to them, employees are prepared to answer questions and respond swiftly.

 


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E. VISION Cooperative Extension’s goal is to become a well-known source of research-based information a provider within Alamance County - for all of the subject areas in which it can provide assistance (i.e. agriculture, weight loss, children’s programming, etc.). In meetings with Cooperative Extension employees (Beth Davis, 4-H Coordinator & Robert Cobb, Extension Supervisor) they specifically mentioned that the Agriculture (farming and gardening), 4-H Youth Development and Weight Loss are areas Cooperative Extension wants the most promotion for. Beth Davis stated that when people have questions such as “How to get rid of insects in their home?” “How to salvage dying crops?” or “How to lose weight?”. They immediately search on Google or YouTube for the answers. Beth wants people to know that Cooperative Extension provides reliable, research-based information for these specific problems. The community members of Alamance County need to know that Cooperative Extension can give them these answers in a more personalized manner. Cooperative Extension knows that some form of strategic communication is necessary to raise awareness of the information it provides. Cooperative Extension would like to create more web content and knows that search engine optimization (SEO) is necessary for more people to use its services on the Internet (however, we recommend SEO for a future campaign). Beth and Roger acknowledge that social media (Twitter and Facebook) are a growing and useful tool for businesses and organizations. Cooperative Extension has a Facebook account, but Beth and Roger admit that they have not fully embraced it as a tool. The Alamance County Cooperative Extension has made it clear that the campaign does not have any funding. It uses only the resources Cooperative Extension can attain at no cost – with the exception of printing. Beyond this limitation, Cooperative Extension is unsure what

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 28   other specific limitations might surface during the campaign, but for some tactics it may be necessary to seek its headquarters’ and/or county government’s approval. The Cooperative Extension headquarters and Alamance County government have strict policies that the Alamance County branch has to abide by. For example, only recently did the Alamance County branch receive approval to create its own Facebook page and have control over it.

 


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F. PITFALLS There are several problems that could be encountered in mounting a communication campaign with Cooperative Extension: •

A lack of personnel to maintain social media accounts

A lack of personnel to meet the needs of its publics if there is increased participation in programs. Will there always be someone accessible to answer questions?

Not being able to effectively reach its publics due to the fact that the organization would like to reach a broad span of demographics

A lack of sufficient knowledge of how to use social media tools

A lack of social media followers who will see and interact with the social media communication

A lack of understanding on how to correctly format communication pieces in an interesting, effective and newsworthy manner for future use

We can avoid these pitfalls by troubleshooting for them in the communications plan. By working closely with the staff to ensure they fully understand what they need to do to continue this campaign after we stop working with Cooperative Extension, to help ensure its success.

Other ideas for preventing these pitfalls include: •

Teaching staff members how to use social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest)

Providing staff training on how to work with media outlets and present stories in a newsworthy manner

•  

Research the channels of communication that reach its publics


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Effectively target the local community- News media coverage, engage local media, local news

Create a community blog (multi-authored by volunteers) to increase word of mouth and information availability

Set a staff member who will be in charge of the campaign and monitoring the social media sites.

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION VI. RESEARCH

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY To maintain its current level of funding, it is important that the Alamance County Cooperative Extension remain relevant in the community. Due to a decline in participation over past years, it recently received a cut in funding from government sources. To best help the organization maintain relevance, it was necessary to find out where it currently stands with the relevant publics and what they believe it could do to improve its awareness efforts. To address this problem, we conducted in-depth interviews with members of the specific target audiences. All interviews were conducted in a semi-structured format, with the goal of learning more about the areas in which it is failing to keep the community informed or aware of its services. The tactics and strategies for this campaign will be based on the information we receive about Cooperative Extension’s current role in the community from these interviews. Since it would be impossible to interview all members of the relevant publics we narrowed the sample population down to specific members of each faction. For local businesses, we interviewed the manager of Company Shops Market. For farmers markets, we interviewed vendors at the Elon Farmers Market. For local media, we interviewed an editor of the Burlington Times News. For each interview we had a specific set of questions pre-planned to ask to ensure we could find useful information, but we also left it slightly open-ended to see if we could acquire additional insights that we were unaware of.

 


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B. PROBLEM

Situation Analysis Cooperative Extension is a local nonprofit organization that offers free research-based information, ranging from agriculture and horticulture to weight loss and family health, for community members. Recently, Cooperative Extension has faced issues in the area of program participation and a lack of funding. Cooperative Extension has experienced a decline in program participation, as well as a decline in the number requests and questions from community members for information. This decline has resulted in funding cuts that will eventually make it more difficult for the organization to function. In addition to a general lack of publicity the organization has within the community, another party of its decline in participation is due to the popularity of search engines like Google and the high-speed results they provide. Many people are not aware that Cooperative Extension offers many benefits to community members beyond information, such as personalized assistance with farming and gardening questions, and free information on weight loss and raising a healthy family. If members of the Alamance County community continue to remain unaware of these services it is very likely that the Alamance branch of Cooperative Extension will no longer exist, as the amount of money Cooperative Extension receives is based on levels of participation. Because of this potential reality, it is the campaign goal to create new ways to seek new outlets of promotion in order to help inform community members about Cooperative Extension, as well as its benefits and services.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 34   Problem Statement Alamance County Cooperative Extension must make a better connection with community members in order to retain or improve its levels of participation and, subsequently, retain its funding. It is vital to educate community members about the benefits and information Cooperative Extension provides so they will use as a resource rather than turn to the Internet or other sources. To spread this information Cooperative Extension should collaborate with groups and organizations that reach the target segment of the Alamance population. By using media outlets, local businesses and farmer market vendors to distribute information about the organization, Cooperative Extension will reach community members faster and more effectively than doing it alone.

Goal Statement Through research, we hope to discover the specific areas in which Cooperative Extension can improve, and gain suggestions on how to do so. By interviewing members of the relevant publics: local media outlets, local businesses and farmers market vendors, we hope to acquire specific information on how each faction of the population can be best reached. We speculate that by successfully targeting these factions, Cooperative Extension will indirectly reach a wider range of the Alamance County population.

 


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C. RESEARCH QUESTIONS Through research, we wanted to discover the extent to which the publics are aware of Cooperative Extension and what they think will be necessary to raise awareness. The data we collect will be used to identify specific tactics that will help reach the campaign goals. Research Questions: 1. Are the people of Alamance County aware of Cooperative Extension and its programs and services? 2. What tactics do other organizations/ businesses use to inform its publics? 3. Can Cooperative Extension work with other organizations and use their well-established tactics to raise awareness for itself? After identifying the key questions of this campaign, we were able to tailor interview questions accordingly. Based off the research questions, we created question guides specific to each of the target populations. These questions were designed to guide the conversations to answers to each of the research questions (See Appendix A for guides used).

 


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D. METHOD In-depth Interviews The primary research method for this campaign was in-depth interviews. In-depth interviews are a method of data collection in which the researcher has a one-on-one conversation with the respondent. This method of data collection allows for deeper insights than a survey through well-tailored responses. These conversations are valuable to the campaign. They allow participants to reveal more issues, opinions and ideas because they are not limited by certain questions. The type of interview we conducted was a semi-structured interview. Each respondent was asked a few general questions-- based off the question-guides we designed-- with the intention of guiding them to answer the research questions. Conversation was allowed to flow freely and explore different but relative areas that we hadn’t previously thought of. Since Cooperative Extension’s relevant publics consist of a wide group, we chose to interview a small sample of people from each of the target factions. We relied on a local directory to identify local businesses, media outlets, and farmers markets that had the greatest likelihood for interest in Cooperative Extension. Research began by conducting interviews onsite with venders at the Elon Farmers Market. Each respondent answered a set of general questions to determine their awareness of Cooperative Extension and to see what types of services they might need (Appendix A). There was no time limit on interviews and we welcomed all of their opinions and suggestions. The main points from each conversation were recorded for future evaluation. The same question guide from the Elon farmers market was used during the interview with an employee at Iseley Farms - one of the oldest family owned farms in Alamance County.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 37   As we did with the first set of interviews, the main points from this conversation were also recorded to be evaluated for trends and insights we could use in designing the campaign. From the faction of local businesses we chose to interview the manager of the local co-op - Company Shops Market. It was chosen as the sample because it specializes in locally grown produce and host several events to encourage community engagement, which could be good for helping Cooperative Extension to foster more awareness. This interview used a new set of questions more specific to the needs and role of a business (Appendix A). As with the interviews with the local farmers, there was no set time limit on this interview and we allowed the respondent to give her input on any questions or concerns she had. The interview with the Accents section editor at the Burlington Times News, took place over the phone. A separate set of questions was used to address media issues (Appendix A). This interview was different from the previous ones because it had a specific goal, to figure out what Cooperative Extension needed to do to get more media coverage, which is an important aspect of the goal to help foster more awareness.

Secondary Research Cooperative Extension is a nationally run organization. For this campaign we hoped to capitalize on previous strategies used by other branches to help the Alamance County branch gain awareness. To do this we performed secondary research. The reason for this research was to gather and identify successful marketing strategies used for Cooperative Extension in the past so that valuable resources such as time and money are not wasted in the execution of this campaign.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 38   Materials for the secondary research were found through both a Google search of past campaigns other branches of Cooperative Extension used, and a Google Scholar search for any past research done to analyze the effectiveness of campaigns. Search terms used to find the information included “Cooperative Extension Marketing”, “Successful Cooperative Extension Campaigns” and “Marketing Strategies for Cooperative Extension.” Results were screened according to relevance. Four resources were determined to be helpful for the purpose of the is campaign, the University of Florida Cooperative Extension page, the Davie County Cooperative Extension branch website, a case study from the USDA website, as well as an article from the Journal of Extension.

 


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E. ANALYSIS After conducting research interviews, we needed to create a way to discover themes and detect specific insights that would be valuable to helping to design the specific strategy and tactics. Since the nature of in-depth interviews and online research is very different, we decided to analyze them in two separate ways.

In-depth Interviews The interviews were recorded and coded for recurring themes and significant details in the interviewees’ thoughts about the Cooperative Extension and their own work. The interviewers transcribed the responses of the interview participants. Interviews were conducted at a moderate to slow pace so interviewers could record as thoroughly as possible. Interviewers later discussed their reactions to the interviews and recorded common themes they extrapolated but that did not show in the written recordings. The interviews were divided into three categories: farm, news, and local business.

Secondary Research Multiple sources were found that could be valuable resources during the campaign. Resources and research was found concerning how to conduct a marketing campaign and a couple campaign ideas to potentially focus on this semester.

 


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F. FINDINGS In-depth Interviews Interview 1: Smith Farms The first interview with Smith Farms took place October 4, 2012 at the Elon farmers market. The interview was approximately 10 minutes long. From this interview, we collected good information about the habits of the grower. They only sell their produce at farmers markets, and attend different markets each day. Among the markets they regularly attend, are the Guilford market and the Piedmont-Triad market. We also learned that they do not use, or known much about the Alamance County Cooperative Extension. This farm is not active in the social media world, but is well known in the area so it does not have a need for marketing. One of the areas Smith Farms would like to see improved attendance is at farmer markets, specifically an increase of students to the local Elon market. Interview 2: Jillie’s Jams The second interview with Jillie’s Jams took place October 4, 2012, at the Elon farmer’ market. The interview was about 15 minutes long. The owner has a long history with Cooperative Extension as an organization; she worked as a 4-H coordinator in suburban New York for many years. She also used the Cornell-based Cooperative Extension to help her start her jam business. This Cooperative Extension was able to help with recipe development, and used the available research facilities to test new formulas. When she moved to N.C., she used Cooperative Extension to help get her kitchen certified to make a commercial product. Despite her positive experience with Cooperative Extension, she has never used or interacted with the Alamance County branch. When she needs information, she often consults online resources. She does not use social media to promote her business. Other markets she sells at include the

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 41   Kernersville and Hillsboro markets. Some of her suggestions for Cooperative Extension to better reach its target audience included a Cooperative Extension info booth at farmers markets to let people know what it has to offer: survival skills for kids, and basic seminars to teach members of the community important information such as when certain produce is in season, and when they should plant. Interview 3: T-5 Farms The third interview with T-5 Farms took place October 4, 2012 at the Elon farmers market. The interview was about 15 minutes long. The respondent was very familiar with Cooperative Extension of Alamance County. The owner of T-5 Farms, is a cousin and neighbor of the current director, Roger Cobb. He had a good opinion of Cooperative Extension and uses their services when he needs help with his crops, according to him the horticulture agent is really knowledgeable and a good resource. The owner also has kids involved in the 4-H program. His daughter shows horses while his son participates in the shooting sports club. Interview 4: The Bread Lady The fourth interview with the Bread Lady took place on October 4, 2012 at the Elon farmers market. The interview lasted 15 minutes. The owner of this business is on the advisory board of the Alamance County Cooperative Extension, so she was aware of the organization and what it can do. She believes one area Cooperative Extension can improve would be to create a greater connection between the organization and local farmers markets. According to the respondent, there needs to be more communication about why it is so important to buy local, to help draw people to the markets and get them buying produce. Many of the people selling at farmers markets only source of income is from what they can make at these markets. Getting more people to shop at these markets would really help the local economy.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 42   Interview 5: Iseley Farms The interview at Iseley Farms took place on October 10, 2012. The interview lasted 15 minutes. The farm is one of the oldest in Alamance County and has been around since 1780. Iseley Farms does not use Cooperative Extension as a resource and instead call other growers if it needs information. A wide demographic of community members shop at its farm stand, which is open six days a week. To attract more clientele it uses Facebook and email as well as a show on a local AM radio station to get out information about events and farm news. Iseley Farms also introduces new products seasonally to keep people’s interest. In addition, many local schools come to the farm on field trips. For the community, it offers hayrides, pumpkin and strawberry picking as well as occasional beef tasting. Some of the farm produce is sold through the Company Shops Market and some of it is donated to Meals on Wheels. The Iseley Farm products are not sold at any other farmers markets. Iseley Farms employee was unaware of the “buy local” campaign.

Interview 6: Burlington Times News The interview with the Burlington Times News Accents editor, Charity Apple was done over the phone. The interview occurred on October 11, 2012 and lasted 20 minutes. According to Charity, many Burlington-based organizations have a problem with awareness. One of the main problems with Cooperative Extension’s media coverage is that in the past columns written by cooperative extension agents on issues such a weight loss, nutrition, gardening, home care have been popular, but it was not obvious that Cooperative Extension deals with those contemporary issues. The best way to get media coverage is to maintain consistent communication with staff members at the paper about events. Anyone can email in updates or press releases about

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 43   organization news. When trying to get a story picked up Cooperative Extension should Cc many people on the email so that it has more of chance being placed in the right section. The paper uses a lot of technology and is very active on Facebook, and Twitter. Many local people rely on these social media sites to acquire their news. Even if it is last minute, Cooperative Extension should always send an email because the story or news could receive coverage on one of these social media sites even if it is not published in the paper. An important point to remember is to let the paper know about all community events, not just media events, so Cooperative Extension will have the most opportunity to get its name out to the public. The paper also offers an advertising discount to non-profits if Cooperative Extension wanted to ensure something gets publicized. There is also an online only calendar on the Burlington Times News website, where organizations can input information about events it will host within the community.

Interview 7: Company Shops Market The interview with Company Shops Market took place on October 10, 2012. It lasted about 20 minutes. The manager, Lila, informed us that Company Shops Market has similar struggles with awareness. One reason she gave was that the name was unclear and did not properly convey what the organization does. In order to counteract this, Company Shops Market recently redesigned the logo so that it would create more brand recognition and better represent what Company Shops Market is. In addition, the shop is looking into using targeted ads on Facebook to reach clientele. According to the manager, Company Shops Market has a broad demographic of shoppers and try to stock products that would appeal to all of them. For example, the store stocks craft beer and snacks for college students, wellness products for moms, and a prepared food section for local workers. Company Shops Market hosts several events to attract

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 44   community members. There are educational workshops, as well as live music and wine tasting. Company Shops Market also sponsors other local events such as the Alzheimer walk. There is also a small farmers market on Saturday mornings. According to Lila, the store is also having trouble attracting shoppers to the market. She said the store would work with Cooperative Extension. She thinks that people would want to take advantage of a personalized free resource if they knew it was available. One suggestion she had was that as part of the campaign Cooperative Extension create a flyer that lists its services just so people would have a better idea of who it is and what it offers.

 


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G. APPLICATION & INTERPRETATION Through The in-depth interviews, we were able to assess Cooperative Extension’s standing within Alamance County and identified a few key areas in which it could improve its efforts to spread awareness.

Local Media: Burlington Times News Through the interview with Charity Apple at the Burlington Times News, we gained insight into many different ways to increase Cooperative Extension’s presence in the newspaper. Most valuable suggestion was that Alamance County Cooperative Extension engages in more consistent communication with the Burlington Times News. Frequent communication equals a stronger relationship with editors, and a better chance of stories being printed. When Cooperative Extension emails updates or press releases to the Burlington Times News, it should Cc as many journalists as possible so it has a greater chance of reaching the right journalist and being published. Another key takeaway from the interview is that the newspaper offers other valuable services that could help Cooperative Extension in its goal to spread awareness. Among these other services are an online community calendar, advertising discounts and the ability to publish social media blasts on its Facebook and Twitter accounts, both of which have large followings.

Elon Farmers Market Vendors and Company Shops Market Through interviews with farmers market vendors and the manager of Company Shops Market, we found that both publics have similar issues to Cooperative Extension when it comes to reaching members of the community. Ultimately, we found that they could both benefit from collaborating with Cooperative Extension.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 46   A recurring theme of the interviews is that the Company Shops Market and some of the farmers market vendors have similar issues with awareness. One way Cooperative Extension could enhance its relevance in the community is to find ways to help these publics and incorporate them into its awareness campaign. Hosting joint events would help both parties gain more publicity, as it would be more newsworthy and more attractive to a wider audience. Both the manager of Company Shops Market and many of the farmers market vendors voiced a willingness to work with Cooperative Extension, making it easy to find ways to collaborate in the future. The desire of other businesses to collaborate with Cooperative Extension is an important aspect of the findings. It demonstrates that there is a need in the community Cooperative Extension can fulfill, which would potentially increase its relevance in modern society. In addition to partnering with these outside organizations, Cooperative Extension’s presence at their locations is a good way to help spread awareness for Cooperative Extension. There were farmers at the markets who do not use the Cooperative Extension; so being able to introduce them to its services in a more direct way will increase the chance of gaining their participation and support. Since one of the problems defined by Cooperative Extension is that it has a hard time reaching out to members in the community who are not interested in agriculture, we think it is necessary that the organization update its program offerings to reflect the greater need of the community. One of the farmers market vendors used to be a Cooperative Extension 4-H Youth Development Agent in New York City, and she had good ideas for reaching out to the publics of Alamance County that live in more urban areas. She recommended teaching children basic survival skills such as how to react to a fire, how to use a fire extinguisher, why drugs are bad,

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 47   etc. These techniques were successfully implemented in other Cooperative Extensions. We believe that the Alamance County Cooperative Extension should consider implementing new programs like this to help expand its reach within the community. One of Cooperative Extension’s largest initiatives right now is the Buy Local campaign. However, most people we interviewed were unaware that it existed. In the effort to spread awareness for the organization, this is potentially an area of interest to focus on. A key insight gained through the interviews is that for many of these farmers, the markets are their only source of income. When they do not sell or their crops fail, they cannot feed their families. This could be turned into a powerful story that used to appeal emotionally to the publics to inform them about the Buy Local campaign and help encourage them to attend local farmers markets. Iseley Farms is very progressive in relation to the rest of the farming community in that it uses Facebook, email and AM radio to reach out to the community about its news and events. Iseley Farms has been very successful at establishing its presence in the community. Cooperative Extension should start offering support and working with the farm to acquire more publicity. Company Shops Market would be a valuable partner in the awareness campaign. It hosts a weekly farmers market location as well as community events that include nutrition workshops and wine tasting. There is a definite need to capitalize on the opportunity for Cooperative Extension to partner with Company Shops Market by providing research-based information for its workshops and having information available at all of its community events. From the interviews, it was clear that the majority of the relevant publics are on social media sites, especially Facebook, and that the stores and organizations use those platforms to help promote their businesses. Because social media is a free and relatively simple way to reach a large audience, Cooperative Extension needs to improve its presence on these platforms if it

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 48   really wants to help spread awareness for the organization. Currently, Cooperative Extension has 51 “likes” on its Facebook page. This is low compared to the pages of other businesses and organizations; Company Shops Market (2,231 “likes”), Iseley Farms (442 “likes”) and Burlington Times News (2,961 “likes”). If Cooperative Extension interacted with all of these organizations on Facebook, it would potentially increase its reach within the community by 5,634 people.

Secondary Research The secondary research provided marketing outlines that have been proven to work by previous Cooperative Extension marketing campaigns. These outlines can serve as guides for the Alamance County Cooperative Extension and act as a reference in the future for aiding campaign planning.

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION VII. PLANS, GOALS, OBJECTIVES

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY After completing the initial research and evaluation for the strategic campaign, we established goals, objectives, strategies, and tactics to address the main problem Cooperative Extension faces. The primary goal of this campaign is to generate more awareness for Cooperative Extension among members of the Alamance Community. One way to attain this goal is by collaborating with the local media outlets, local businesses, and local farmers. By cementing its presence in the community, Cooperative Extension can establish a more reliable, consistent identity within the community. This strengthened sense of identity and community presence will lead to greater interaction and participation of community members with the Alamance County Cooperative Extension.

 


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B. STATEMENT OF POLICY & INTENT The main problem currently facing the Alamance County Cooperative Extension is that there is a general lack of awareness among community members as to what it is and what it does. Most members of the community do not use Cooperative Extension as a resource and so its services are under-used. The goal of the campaign is to create more awareness of Cooperative Extension among the community members of Alamance County. Our plan is to collaborate with local media outlets, local businesses and local farmers to strengthen Cooperative Extension’s presence in the community. Partnering with local organizations will create more awareness for Cooperative Extension among its target audience, the Alamance County community members. Through these partnerships, Cooperative Extension will reach a wider demographic of community members, and educate them about what Cooperative Extension is and what it can do. This will help Cooperative Extension attain the campaign goal of generating awareness by introducing more people to the organization. The success of this campaign is based on many members from local media, local businesses and local farmers expressing an interest in partnering with Cooperative Extension. These partnerships are crucial to gaining awareness since each group reaches a different segment of the population and it will ensure that the most amount of community members possible hear about Cooperative Extension and the services it provides. The overall theme of this campaign plan is to increase awareness of Cooperative Extension through partnerships with local organizations so that more people in the community can realize what Cooperative Extension can do for them.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 52   C. CONTRIBUTION TO ORGANIZATIONAL GOALS

Cooperative Extension has a broad goal of working with the community in order to provide free support and information on a variety of topics. Its tagline is “empowering people | providing solutions.” The organization utilizes the research-based information it receives from NC State and NC A&T and provides it to the community at no cost. Cooperative Extension is a free resource, and it wants the community to know that and see how they can benefit from its services The goal of the strategic campaign plan is to help the community understand what Cooperative Extension is and why it is useful. Cooperative Extension wants to empower people and provide them with information, but before that can happen, it must make a stronger connection with its target audience. Based upon the areas that Cooperative Extension specializes in, we were able to identify specific segments of the population who would benefit most from the information it has to offer – locally minded people, farmers, gardeners and those who appreciate working outdoors. We now plan to get the organization in touch with these community members so that they can move forward and make use of what Cooperative Extension has to offer. The primary goal of the plan is to raise awareness within the community for what Cooperative Extension is and the types of services it provides. The target market for this campaign is– farmers markets, local food shops, etc. Much of the target public gets their news information from local media outlets. To best spread awareness it is crucial to have these local media outlets feature Cooperative Extension as well as to partner with local businesses in order to market the organization and its services. Partnering with local venues will create an identity for Cooperative Extension, through its presence at their locations and events. At the completion of this plan, Cooperative Extension should have a stronger presence and a stronger identity within the community. Once a connection is established with its audience, Cooperative Extension will be able to continue to build upon its presence in the community. To  


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 53   improve the relationship Cooperative Extension has with the Alamance County community, we will establish a plan to use local media outlets as well as a plan to pair with local businesses to find ways to get more information about the organization into the community, which will make the public more aware of its services.

 


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D. STATEMENT OF OBJECTIVES Objectives: 1. To increase news coverage of the Cooperative Extension by 50 percent within one year of the implemented plan. 2. Establish a partnership with the Company Shops Market and assist with at least ten of its workshops within one year of the implemented plan. 3. To reach 300 Facebook “likes” (500 percent increase) within one year of the implemented plan 4. To increase awareness of the Buy Local campaign—promoting local foods—by 500 percent within one year of the implemented plan.

In order to increase awareness of Cooperative Extension and the Buy Local campaign by 50 percent, it needs to increase communication with other organizations via Facebook, local news coverage and information placed at farmers markets and Company Shops Market workshops. The awareness objectives are measured by how many new followers the Alamance County Cooperative Extension Facebook page acquires. The news coverage objective is measured by how many articles are published in the Burlington Times News, on the newspaper’s Facebook and Twitter, and how many events are posted on the newspaper’s digital calendar. The partnership objective will be measured by how many of the Company Shops Market’s events Cooperative Extension participates in.

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION VIII. STRATEGIES

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY To achieve the campaign goal of generating more awareness for Cooperative Extension, we outlined several specific and measurable objectives to foster better relationships with members in the community. Each objective is tailored individual publics, Alamance community members, the Burlington Times News, local businesses including Company Shops Market and farmers market vendors to make the plan as effective as possible. Through the implementation of this plan, Cooperative Extension will strengthen relationships with all of its publics. By focusing on these relationships, it will reach a greater portion of the Alamance community and inform them about the many services Cooperative Extension provides.

 


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B. PUBLICS ADDRESSED It is important to identify specific publics to effectively tailor the campaign to target the needs and differences of each public in a way that contribute to the overall success of the campaign. The overall mission of the campaign is to target members of the Alamance community. In order to create more specific tactics and strategies with regard to target publics, the larger population was divided into subgroups.

Burlington Times News Local media outlets are important to the goal of helping Cooperative Extension spread awareness within the community because it has the ability to reach a large amount of the population of Alamance County at once. The reason it is crucial to reach a large demographic of the community is because Cooperative Extension offers a wide range of services and programs designed to appeal to almost every segment of the population including kids, the elderly, low income families and farmers, among others. Since there is already a relationship between Cooperative Extension and the Burlington Times News, it is a good place to begin focusing the media relations efforts. In order to get as much media coverage as possible, the organization needs to strengthen its relationship with news organizations. Through consistent communication between Cooperative Extension and the editors of the paper, it will be possible to ensure that press releases, or news bursts, get covered for every event and initiative Cooperative Extension is involved in. Essentially, the more information sent to the paper, the more often it will appear in the paper. It is to take advantage of other resources the Burlington Times News has for nonprofits, such as a free community calendar and discounted advertising. This relationship can be used to create a stronger social media presence. Both the paper’s Facebook and Twitter accounts have a

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 58   high following within the community, so even if nothing is published in the actual paper, it is extremely valuable to have news shared through these platforms and to interact with the Burlington Times News’ followers through social media.

Company Shops Market Company Shops Market is a local business that also focuses on natural, locally grown produce and products. The store has a wide appeal within the community and draw in a consumer demographic that would be potentially interested in the services Cooperative Extension provides. Company Shops Market hosts many community events that have established an audience. By collaborating with Company Shops Market on these events, Cooperative Extension could have a great outlet for introducing its services to the community.

Farmers Market Vendors Farmers market vendors are an important target audience for Cooperative Extension because they are the people that most directly benefit from the agricultural research and services Cooperative Extension provides. The clientele of farmers markets could also benefit from the information Cooperative Extension provides about the correct time to plant or buy their own local produce. By getting more involved with vendors and increasing its presence at farmers markets, Cooperative Extension can gain valuable information about how it can improve itself and tailor its services to benefit this population the most. Through research it became clear that these vendors could also use the help of Cooperative Extension to better educate the community about buying local and the many ways that a mutually beneficial relationship could be created

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 59   between Cooperative Extension and farmers market vendors through continuous communication and planning.

 


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C. STRATEGIES The strategies for this campaign are designed to achieve the campaign objectives. This section describes what strategies will be used to achieve the plan’s objectives in regard to each public targeted. In the previous section of the campaign plan specific objectives were outlined and detailed. These objectives can be summarized as increasing awareness and involvement with Cooperative Extension. Some strategies will be the same for multiple publics because the publics are overlapping in various ways. In order to achieve the goal of spreading awareness of Cooperative Extension and what it has to offer, strategies have to be made to outline how to do so.

Burlington Times News •

Launch a media relations campaign to grow the relationship between Cooperative Extension and the Burlington Times News.

Strengthen presence and increase interactions on social media sites, specifically Facebook.

Company Shops Market •

Increase social media presence with more interactions on the Company Shops Market Facebook page such as new posts and tags to generate more awareness and drive traffic back to the Cooperative Extension.

Strengthen relationship with employees at Company Shops Market with more consistent communication.

 


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Create a mutually beneficial relationship with Company Shops Market to help create more opportunities to reach its clientele and inform them about the benefits of Cooperative Extension through events.

Farmers Market Vendors •

 

Strengthen relationships through consistent communication and contact with vendors.


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D. OBSTACLES When creating a comprehensive strategic campaign for a client, one should generally assume that not everything would run smoothly. There will always be obstacles in the implementation of the campaign process that are unavoidable. The best way to combat such obstacles is to recognize what they may be before executing the campaign. Below is a list of potential obstacles that could arise when carrying out certain campaign tactics. In addition to this list of potential complications, we have provided some ideas and suggestions on how to combat them.

Burlington Times News •

Lack of Interest: One goal of this campaign is to reach the community members of Alamance County through trusted, local media outlets. However, in order to be featured in these local media outlets, specifically, the Burlington Times News, stories must be newsworthy. Each story or feature must be appropriate for the audience of Burlington Times News and should be relevant to other events happening within the community. One way to do this is to release stories relevant to the current season, holiday, etc., and to make sure they are interesting, newsworthy stories.

Lack of Reach: In order to land a story in the Burlington Times News the correct person, who wants to feature your story, must be contacted. Because Cooperative Extension has multiple departments that specialize in different areas, the contact at the Burlington Times News will always be different. In order to ensure that Cooperative Extension reaches the correct person and emails the story to the correct editor, we recommend compiling a list of all editors at the Burlington Times News and forwarding the story or update to all of

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 63   them. This will increase Cooperative Extension’s chance of having the correct person read the email and subsequently receiving news coverage.

Company Shops Market •

Competition: One of the biggest allies and potentially most helpful partnerships for Cooperative Extension is the Company Shops Market in downtown Burlington. Those who shop at the Company Shops Market are “locally-minded” people. People who attend workshops and events at the Company Shops Market are those who care about community. These are the people that Cooperative Extension needs to reach out to and they are the people who will potentially use Cooperative Extension on a regular basis. One of the ideas is to work with the Company Shops Market at events it is already hosting, as well as to host events specifically for the store. Cooperative Extension should access Company Shops Market’s customer base in a non-competitive way. As Cooperative Extension is a nonprofit, it will not steal Company Shops Market’s customers. While both organizations share the same target audience, different services are provided, so Cooperative Extension should not be a threat to Company Shops Market.

Lack of Interest: One of the obstacles to this campaign might be that Company Shops Market does not have an interest in working with Cooperative Extension. Since its clientele are people who are generally concerned with eating and living healthy, we feel they are likely to be interested in Cooperative Extension’s services. Company Shops Market might not be open to some of the specific tactics, such as placing informational flyers or brochures in the store. This would make it difficult to meet the goals and

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 64   objectives for this campaign. Cooperative Extension can combat this obstacle by doing its best to show that the relationship between Cooperative Extension and Company Shops Market will be mutually beneficially. Through enhanced communication and interaction, Cooperative Extension can prove that it will provide Company Shops Market with valuable information and resources.

Farmers Market Vendors •

Lack of Interest: One issue of working with farmers market vendors is that they might not see a need to seek out additional information. Because they are experienced farmers, they might have their own methods or source for gathering information and might not find Cooperative Extension’s services and information helpful. Cooperative Extension will combat this issue by maintaining regular conversation with vendors and offering the farmers information that they can use and provide to customers.

 


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COOPERATIVE EXTENSION IX. TACTICS

 


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A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The tactics detailed in this chapter are designed to help reach the overall campaign goal of increased awareness among members of Alamance County by addressing the specific objectives. The tactics employed will be specific to each segment of the population as it was broken down in the strategy section; local media, local businesses, and farmers market vendors. This campaign focuses on a sample of these larger populations, the Burlington Times News, Company Shops Market, and the Elon Farmers Market. For the Burlington Times News, the campaign will address the issue of strengthening relationships through weekly emails and press releases. It will also strive to increase activity on Facebook by commenting on posts and encouraging the paper to tag Cooperative Extension in its posts. For Company Shops Market, a monthly newsletter will help to increase conversation. Cooperative Extension also needs to offer to co-sponsor or host events for the shop to help build the relationship. In addition, Cooperative Extension needs to increase its interactions with Company Shops Market’s Facebook audience through posts, and tags. To strengthen the relationship between farmers market vendors and Cooperative Extension monthly meetings will help to assess the needs of vendors. Informational materials will be given to Company Shops Market to provide basic information about Cooperative Extension’s programs and services so as to educate the store’s employees, as well as its clientele. In addition, Cooperative Extension will also try to connect with Company Shops Market via Facebook and other social media sites as a way of increasing its online presence.

 


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B. OBJECTIVES Objectives are time specific, attainable, and measurable. The objectives in this campaign are designed to raise overall awareness for Cooperative Extension among the members of the Alamance community. Raising awareness is important to Cooperative Extension because it does not have sufficient levels of interaction with the members of the Alamance community, especially in the more populated areas such as Burlington and Elon. Cooperative Extension would like to make the community more aware of the programs and services available in order to support the organization and make it more relevant. When identifying specific objectives for this campaign, attainability, longevity, and measurability were important factors to ensure the best outcome for Cooperative Extension and achieve the goals previously presented. For each objective provided there is a specific, realistic and measurable tactic to evaluate its success toward helping Cooperative Extension increase awareness within the community. The objectives of the plan are as follows:

Obtain more media coverage in local news outlets •

Increase newspaper coverage by 50 percent from last year

Increase coverage in other media outlets by 25 percent

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Measure this media coverage by using an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of each time Cooperative Extension receives a mention or has a story covered by a local media outlet.

Form stronger relationships with area businesses and local farmers market vendors

 

Hold three to five events with local businesses every 12 months.

Offer events and incentives to local businesses to encourage future collaboration


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 68   •

Send monthly updates about Cooperative Extension to managers and owners of local businesses

Provide information about Cooperative Extension to businesses and farmers through print materials and in-person communication.

This will be measured by seeing an increase in the amount of programs Cooperative Extension is able to put together in conjunction with area businesses. This can also be measured by the amount of communication between Cooperative Extension and business owners.

Increase social media interactions with target publics •

Increase Facebook followers by 300 percent

Increase tags by other local organizations on Facebook by 200 percent

Increase amount of personal Facebook interaction on page by 200 percent

This will be measured by analyzing the number of followers, conversations and tags Cooperative Extension is currently getting and increasing activity on the social media platforms to reach the campaign goals.

Increase program participation •

Increase participation in Cooperative Extension programs by 15 percent

This will be measured by an increase in the number of people that register to participate in Cooperative Extension programs after the campaign launch

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 69   C. PROPOSAL FOR MEETING OBJECTIVES Company Shops Market & Other Local Businesses The focus of this campaign is to use the consumer base of local media outlets, local businesses and farmers market vendors in order to better connect with Alamance community members. The relationship will be strengthened with these publics by using multiple different strategies. The strategies we are recommending for building a relationship with Company Shops Market will be hopefully used in the future to create similar relationships with other local businesses.

Ways to Strengthen Relationships: •

Co-sponsor events that Company Shops Market hosts and integrates information from Cooperative Extension into them. (Ex. Wine Tasting Event, put on a brief showcase about how to grow your own wine grapes).

Distribute a monthly newsletter with seasonal information as well as information about upcoming events, and new developments in Cooperative Extension.

Host events for Company Shops Market to give employees tips and advice they could pass on to customers (Ex. Once a month host an event about growing plants for that season).

Have an information booth about Cooperative Extension at the farmers market hosted behind it on Saturdays

Create print materials to have/hand out at Company Shops Market, such as brochures about what Cooperative Extension is, and what programs it offers, at each register.

 

Create fliers about upcoming events and programs hung up on the community board.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 70  

Increase Social Media Interactions • Increase interactions with Company Shops Market’s Facebook page by encouraging the store to tag Cooperative Extension in posts, as well as by posting helpful information on its page.

Burlington Times News The local newspaper, Burlington Times News, is important to the campaign because it has a broad reach within the Alamance community and there is already a relationship between the newspaper and Cooperative Extension. Burlington Times News is crucial to meeting the campaign objectives because it will help Cooperative Extension to reach its larger audience.

Increased media coverage Consistently create a press releases for every event and Cc multiple editors to have the most chance of getting the story picked up

Increase social media interactions • Network with editors at the paper to have them mention Cooperative Extension on its facebook pages and Twitter accounts. • Get the Burlington Times News to tag the Cooperative Extension page in its posts to drive traffic back to the page and help Cooperative Extension to increase page likes • Comment on posts the Burlington Times News features to help self-promote and increase social media exposure

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 71  

Increase program participation • Mention Cooperative Extension programs and services in news releases with the intent to have articles written that will draw community interest and create awareness about different opportunities individuals may have with Cooperative Extension

Farmers Market Vendors Another important part of the campaign is focusing on reaching out to local farmers markets in Alamance County. The following are tactics designed to reach the objectives of developing stronger relationships, increase program participation, and develop more social media connections.

Strengthen Relationships • Interview vendors once a month to stay up-to-date with any changes or difficulties farmers are having, as well as to help offer them advice and get them to keep Cooperative Extension in mind as a valuable resource. • Promote the Buy Local campaign with literature at booths as well as with one-on-one education • Reach out to farmers on a regular basis via their Facebook pages to provide information and updates quickly.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 72   Increase Program Participation •

Create print materials to give to vendors with information about Cooperative Extension. These materials will include information about the programs and services Cooperative Extension offers, as well as contact information. The objective is to have people realize Cooperative Extension provides services and programs they can use, thereby increasing participation in its programs.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 73  

D. OBSTACLES It is always best to be prepared for any problems that may arise when executing a strategic communications plan.

Company Shops Market & Other Local Businesses •

PROBLEM: The event is not targeted towards Company Shops Market publics. One of the main tactics in working with Company Shops is to partner with it for events. One of the tactics designed for Company Shops Market is to put on events for it, or at least become a featured staple in its events. The biggest obstacle to this will be ensuring to targeting the appropriate audience. Providing relevant information is crucial to getting community members to attend. This all comes down to research and speaking with Company Shops about whom its true public is. Providing its audience with information they find interesting not only encourage them come to future events but also they will use it as a resource outside of Company Shops Market walls.

PROBLEM: People do not look at the community board or brochures that Company Shops Market provides for customers. While brochures and fliers are always a great way to get the word out about an organization, sometimes customers overlook them. Research on what Company Shops Market consumers generally pay most attention too is important to planning workshops. In addition, it would be helpful to have Cooperative Extension featured in its monthly emails and newsletters – which people generally respond to best. This is a more direct way to reach consumers, rather than simply leaving information at Company Shops Market in the hope that it will be picked up.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 74   Burlington Times News •

PROBLEM: Burlington Times News does not print stories submitted by Cooperative Extension. It can be difficult to write a compelling press release that seems newsworthy enough to be covered in a newspaper today. If it appears that despite efforts to submit more releases and maintain contact with editors to update them about events, Cooperative Extension is still not receiving enough media coverage, other options will need to be used to get results to increase media presence. One of these options would be to take advantage of the discounted advertising rates offered by the Burlington Times News nonprofit organizations. This could be a good way to start appearing in the paper more and could eventually lead to more news coverage. Even if stories are not published in the paper, through communication with editors it may be possible to get mentions on the paper’s Twitter and Facebook pages, both of which reach a wide audience.

Farmers Market Vendors •

PROBLEM: People see Cooperative Extension as just another vendor at the market. It is important to educate other vendors and shoppers about the ways Cooperative Extension can benefit them. To reach the goal of increased program participation it needs to be obvious to farmers that Cooperative Extension can be used as a resource to help achieve their goals.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 75  

COOPERATIVE EXTENSION X. EVALUATION

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 76  

A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The following is a plan to evaluate success of the campaign by outlining a method for data collection and recommendations for analyzing the effectiveness of the tactics. To determine the success of this campaign the majority of the interactions Cooperative Extension has with the Alamance community must be recorded. In the methods section we will discuss exactly how to monitor interactions with each segment of the target population. Data will be organized and tracked daily through the use of a spreadsheet to help the staff analyze the progress and effectiveness of this campaign. The goal is to ensure that the staff of Cooperative Extension will be able to track of all the progress as the campaign progresses, and improve upon it in the future to help further increase awareness of Cooperative Extension within the Alamance community.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 77   B. EVALUATION CRITERIA Based on the objectives and tactics of this campaign, the following criteria will be used to determine the success of the campaign:

Direct interactions with Cooperative Extension by members of the Alamance Community •

Number of new “likes” on the Cooperative Extension Facebook page

Number of comments on the Facebook page by other Facebook users

Phones calls

Email inquiries

Press coverage •

Increased number of articles about Cooperative Extension printed in the Burlington Times News

Amount of times Cooperative Extension is tagged in posts or tweets on the newspaper’s Facebook and Twitter sites

Attendance rates of community members at workshops and events •

Number of people that attend co-sponsored events, such as informational workshops at Company Shops Market

The number of interactions people have with Cooperative Extension is a key factor in raising awareness and increasing participation with the organization. By increasing the opportunities for people to access information about Cooperative Extension, the more successful

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 78   it will be at informing them about what Cooperative Extension is and what it can do for the community. Based on the research, we believe that once people realize the different ways Cooperative Extension can help them, they will be more willing to use it as a resource and think of it as a valuable program within the community. Our evaluation criteria are consistent with the main goal of this campaign: to raise awareness within the community for Cooperative Extension. By aiming the evaluations at tracking the amount of interactions Cooperative Extension has with its publics, Cooperative Extension can get a good idea of how successful the tactics are. Cooperative Extension will know the tactics are effective if its number of interactions increases.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 79  

C. METHOD The method used to evaluate the success of Cooperative Extension’s campaign will need to measure a wide range of data points. Cooperative Extension employees will track data over time, analyze social media responses and monitor community outreach efforts in order to keep a meticulous record of the campaign’s success. Evaluation methods are laid out according to each component of the campaign strategy:

Local News Outlets Campaign: The overarching goal of the media campaign is to obtain more positive media coverage in local news outlets. Currently, Cooperative Extension does not have a large presence in the local media. It would be beneficial if more of its events and successes were reported. This would help increase awareness for Cooperative Extension since it would appear more frequently in the news. For this campaign, the goal is to increase the number of stories printed about Cooperative Extension in newspapers by 50 percent.

Method: •

Goal: Submit one press release per week to the Burlington Times News.

Goal: Submit one press release per month to all local media outlets (TV, radio, newspapers, magazines)

Track how frequently press releases are sent out (1/week – if not more).

Track the responses received (Interested, Somewhat Interested, Not Interested, in featuring the story – or no response at all).

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 80   •

Track how many times Cooperative Extension is featured/covered by each specific local media outlets.

Utilize an excel spreadsheet to bring all of these elements together to compare and contrast.

From this method, Cooperative Extension will be able to compare how often employees send out press releases and how often those stories get featured. Moreover, Cooperative Extension will be able to compare the quality and type of story it submits to how interested the media outlets are in featuring that story. Cooperative Extension will also be able to see which media outlets it must work with to create a stronger relationship, and who is most likely to feature the articles, when and why.

Area Businesses and Local Farmers Markets Campaign: The overarching goal for the businesses and local farmers markets campaign is to form stronger bonds with these outlets. Over the next year, it would be beneficial for Cooperative Extension to hold three to five events per quarter with local businesses; offer incentives and events to local businesses for working with Cooperative Extension; send monthly updates about Cooperative Extension to managers and owners of local businesses and provide print materials to business in the area.

Method:

 

Goal: Attend local farmers markets at the beginning of each month for 12 months.

Goal: Partner with Company Shops Market for events once a month for 12 months.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 81   •

Goal: Personally visit and make contact with local farmers and businesses, providing them with the paper materials.

Utilize an excel spreadsheet to record how many visits Cooperative Extension employees have made to all area businesses (farmers markets, Company Shops Market, farms).

Record on an excel spreadsheet the type of activity that each vendor is attracted too and attends to gain more information about which types of events are successful.

From this method, Cooperative Extension will not only be able to make contact with its public, but also gauge the type of impression it makes on them each time it visits. After the 12 months, Cooperative Extension will have a better idea of which activities and events the publics appreciate. Cooperative Extension will be able to better target its paper and marketing materials.

Social Media Campaign: The overarching goal for the social media campaign is to increase Cooperative Extension’s interaction with its target publics. Over the next year Cooperative Extension should increase its Facebook “likes” by 300 percent; increase tags by other local organizations by 200 percent, and increase personal Facebook interactions by 200 percent.

Goal: Utilize the Facebook pages of local businesses and media outlets to reach the audience of Alamance County.

Goal: Tag other local businesses and media stations in posts that are applicable.

Track and record the number of times Cooperative Extension tags another organization in its Facebook posts.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 82   •

Track and record the number of likes Cooperative Extension gets per post – and the subject matter of each post.

Track and record the number of posts Cooperative Extension is tagged in by other organizations.

By increasing Cooperative Extension’s social media interactions with these local businesses and media outlets, it will not only establish contact with these specific organizations but it will also reach these businesses’ public as well.

Specific data collection technique for all populations: For each population, a member of the Cooperative Extension staff will be in charge of recording the daily change in all of these categories on an Excel spreadsheet. For this measurement technique to work, it is important that Cooperative Extension makes an extra effort to focus on the actions, such as new Facebook posts, comments on other organizations’ pages and the amount of media coverage it gets based off of press releases it sends to local media outlets. While Cooperative Extension should make an effort to monitor the actions of others such as tags on Facebook, new likes, and comments on posts, it will be extremely difficult to keep an accurate record of every time a person or organization mentions it. In addition, it will also be difficult to monitor if people are calling or emailing as a result of the tactics or because of other reasons. In the future, if Cooperative Extension wants to expand its abilities to track certain actions it can outsource to a company or invest in a software program that tracks all Internet interactions. Another available option, should Cooperative Extension decide it wants to know more about what specifically is driving people to the organization, would be to ask for feedback

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 83   from community members about how they heard of Cooperative Extension. There are many ways to do this including, polls on Facebook, email or over the phone. The spreadsheet of data will be a useful tool to ensure that Cooperative Extension is following this basic communications plan, and it will help Cooperative Extension to see the positive effect this communication can have on an organization.

Rationalization for method: We chose to create a spreadsheet to monitor and track interactions for all criteria among the populations for several reasons. The first reason is that the staff of Cooperative Extension said they are familiar with the Microsoft software programs so those staff members should already have a basic understanding of how Excel works. The second reason is that it is easy to calculate change using the Excel format. Being able to calculate differences between days, weeks, and months is crucial to identifying which of the tactics are successful at helping to reach the goal of increased awareness and interactions. It is also a convenient form to keep records together over a long period of time by simply creating a new tab for each month. The most important reason for using a spreadsheet to track campaign progress is that for the campaign to be successful Cooperative Extension must rely on human interaction. This means measurements will not be consistent from day to day. This technique will be the most effective way to track the effectiveness of the tactics. The populations this campaign is designed to reach directly are social media users in Alamance County, farmers market vendors, editors and directors from local media outlets and owners and managers of local businesses.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 84   For this campaign, we chose to focus on a narrower sample of the Alamance population to ensure efforts could be tailored to each group and maximize the campaign’s success. The sections of the larger populations chosen for this campaign are the Elon Farmers Market, Company Shops Market, and the Burlington Times News. This sample was selected because these publics had the greatest direct ties to Cooperative Extension and share in many of the same goals. Involving organizations with similar mindsets and values is the most effective approach to beginning an awareness campaign because these organizations would be the most motivated to help.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 85  

D. ANALYSIS In conjunction with the data collection techniques, it would be beneficial to set aside meeting time once a month for all Cooperative Extension staff members to analyze and discuss the findings from the Excel monthly spreadsheet. This spreadsheet will include the amount of interaction Cooperative Extension has had with community members each month. It will be a valuable tool to help staff members observe any increases in participation or take action in the right direction towards reaching their campaign goal of creating more awareness for Cooperative Extension within the community. To reach the campaign objectives for the year, social media interactions will need to increase by 10-15 percent on a monthly basis in order to reach the goal of 200 percent increase by the end of this campaign. By tracking interactions with the community, such as new “likes” on Facebook, the number of times Cooperative Extension posts and others comment on those posts, as well as the amount of media coverage it receives as a result of its efforts, it will be easier to estimate if the organization is on track to meet the objectives. As part of the analysis, it will be important to record the increase of interactions in other areas such as registration for programs and attendance at workshops. As a result of this campaign, program attendance should increase by 15 percent by the end of 12 months. By recording numbers on a monthly basis, it will be possible to determine if this objective was reached. Since it is possible to open multiple tabs in one Excel document it will be convenient for the Cooperative Extension staff to track progress over a series of several months.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 86  

COOPERATIVE EXTENSION XI. BUDGET

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 87  

A. BUDGET For this campaign, there are very limited funds for this campaign, so costs will be minimal in that many of them (ink cartridges, paper, etc.) are costs already accounted for by Cooperative Extension. The objective of this campaign plan is to increase awareness and to increase the number of guests at the Cooperative Extension. The costs consist of and are divided into the categories of printing and transportation expenditures.

Printing Expenses •

Reams of white printing paper at $6.99 each (1 ream is 500 sheets of paper). Estimate use is two packages: $15

Black Ink Cartridges (approx. $20 each)

2 cartridges for 1,000 1-page information sheets to be distributed at local farmers markets and Company Shops Market: $40

Color Ink Cartridges (optional cost; approx. $25)

2 cartridges for special event flyers (holiday fact sheets, promotional flyers for Company Shops Market workshops): $50

Total Estimated Printing Expenses: $105

Transportation Expenses •

Fuel (approx. $3.30 per gallon) for visits to Company Shops Market and local farmers markets (Transportation expenses are low enough that they do not need being factored into the total expenses)

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 88   •

Fuel cost (according to MapQuest.com) for weekly round trips to Company Shops Market workshops (2.69 miles): $0.92

Fuel cost (according to MapQuest.com) for monthly round trips to the Elon Farmers Market (6.42 miles): $2.48

Fuel cost (according to MapQuest.com) for monthly round trips to Company Shops Market Farmers Market (2.69 miles): $0.92

The total estimated campaign expense is $105. These expenses are already factored into the Cooperative Extension budget so there is potentially no need to set aside funds for these expenses. Again, these costs will contribute to the campaign in that they will help spread awareness of Cooperative Extension and the services it provides, and increase community interaction with Cooperative Extension.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 89  

COOPERATIVE EXTENSION XII. TIMETABLE

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 90  

SCHEDULE The schedule and calendar will help Cooperative Extension prioritize and complete all different facets of the campaign. The following is divided into specific categories and times in which the tactics should be carried out:

Local News Outlets: •

Press Release to Burlington Times News – Every Wednesday

Discuss past or upcoming events.

Press Release to ALL local media outlets – Last Wednesday of each month.

Social Media: • Social Media Posts – Once a Day (Weekdays) 

Monday – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Tuesday – Gardening Tip of the Day

Wednesday – Recipe of the Day

Thursday – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day

Friday – Events for Upcoming Week Post & Tag Another Organization in your post.

 

Live Chat with Specialists – 1st and 3rd Monday of each month.

Review social media questions and comments from members of online community

Everyday


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 91   •

Social Media Scanning Day – Every Thursday, we will look at all of the competitors and other Cooperative Extension branches to see what is being posting about/events are having.

Area Businesses and Local Farmers Markets •

Attend Farmers Markets – First week of every month.

Event with Company Shops Market – Third Wednesday of every month.

Print Materials Completed - - by January 31, 2013. 

Brochures and Fliers with brief description of each division.

Seasonal Print Materials (Calendars) – To be worked on quarterly. 

Winter Calendar - December

Spring Calendar – March

Summer Calendar - June

Fall Calendar – September

Program Participation: •

Division Meetings – Quarterly (November, February, May, November) 

Here, you will discuss all of the different programs each division is running. The first step to increase program participation is to make sure each division is on the same page.

Preview and Update of Local organizations and events going on in the community - Last Friday of each month.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 92   

To be compiled by Secretary and sent out to each division head so that Cooperative Extension can look for ways to get involved with the community each month.

Update of Cooperative Extension to be provided to each local business and other community members – Last Friday of each month.

Helpful Tips: •

Recognize Holidays – They are listed on the calendar! 

For example: During Thanksgiving week provide a recipe on Wednesday for a great sweet potatoes recipe.

                             

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 93    

~ November 2012 ~

◄ Oct 2012

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Dec 2012 ►

Thu 1

Fri

Sat

2

3

9

10

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day

4

5

6

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the the Day Day

Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

11

7

Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

12

13

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the the Day Day

14

8

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Events for Upcoming Tip of the Day Week Tag another organization.

15 THANKSGIVING

Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

18

19

20

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the the Day Day

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK

Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

DIVISION MEETING

25

21

26

27

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the the Day Day

28

Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL NEWS OUTLETS.

 

16

17

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

22

23

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

29

30

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

24

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 94  

~ December 2012 ~

◄ Nov 2012

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Jan 2013 ►

Thu

Fri

Sat 1 Attend Farmers Markets

2

Attend Farmers Markets

3

4

6

7

8

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News. Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week &Tag another organization. Visual Outline for Print Materials Completed Attend Farmers Markets

HANUKKA BEGINS

10

11

13

14

15

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week & Tag another organization. Text for Print Materials Submitted from each division.

17

18

20

21 WINTER

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

SOLSTICE Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week & Tag another organization. Compile Text & Graphics in outline for Print Materials

24

25

27

28

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week & Tag another organization. Send out Draft 1 of Print Materials to all divisions Preview/Update of Local organizations/events

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK Attend Farmers Markets

9

16 HANUKKA ENDS

23

CHRISTMAS

30

31 Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Monthly update to local businesses

 

5

12

19

26

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

Attend Farmers Markets

22

29

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS. Have all printed materials (fliers, brochures, etc.) finished, printed and distributed by January 31st 2013.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 95  

~ January 2013 ~

◄ Dec 2012

Sun

Mon

Tue 1

Wed 2

Feb 2013 ►

Thu 3

NEW YEARS DAY Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

6

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

8

9

10

11

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Note edits from each division for Print Materials Attend Farmers Markets

14

15

16

17

18

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK

 

5

12

19

Draft 2 of Print Materials Done

21

22

23

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Release Social Media Scanning of upcoming/past Day event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Finalize print materials & send to be printed. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events

28

29

30

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.

Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

27

Attend Farmers Markets

Sat

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

20

4

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Release Social Media Scanning of upcoming/past Day event/news to Burlington Times News

7

Attend Farmers Markets

13

Fri

24

31

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Release Social Media Scanning of upcoming/past Day event/news to ALL PRINT MATERIALS NEWS OUTLETS. FINALIZED & PRINTED. Monthly update to local businesses

25

26

Have all printed materials (fliers, brochures, etc.) finished, printed and distributed by January 31st 2013


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 96  

~ February 2013 ~

◄ Jan 2013

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Mar 2013 ►

Thu

Fri

Sat

1 Social Media Post 2 – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

3 SUPER BOWL SUNDAY

4

5

6

7 Social Media Post – 8

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets. Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Markets

Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets. Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets Attend Farmers Markets

11

12

13

14

15

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

MARDI GRAS Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Gardening Tip of the Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

VALENTINES DAY Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

18

19

21

22

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

25

26

28

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK Attend Farmers Markets

10

17

24

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

20

27

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release DIVISION MEETING of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

 

GROUNDHOG DAY Attend Farmers Markets (bring winter print materials)

9

16

23

Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day Monthly update to local businesses

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 97  

~ March 2013 ~

◄ Feb 2013

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Apr 2013 ►

Thu

Fri

Sat

1 Social Media Post 2 – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Event with local business.

3

Attend Farmers Markets

4

5

7

8 Social Media Post 9

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

– Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Create spring calendar for print material handout. Attend Farmers Markets

11

12

14

15

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Create spring calendar for print material handout.

18

19

20 SPRING

21 Social Media

22 Social Media

BEGINS Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Finalize and print spring calendar and materials for handout.

Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day & Social Media Scanning Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

25

26

27

28

29 GOOD FRIDAY 30

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK Attend Farmers Markets

10 DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME

17

ST. PATRICKS DAY Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

24

31 EASTER SUNDAY

13

Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Release Social Media Scanning of upcoming/past Day event/news to ALL news outlets.

16

23

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week &Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS. \

 

6

Attend Farmers Markets


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 98  

~ April 2013 ~

◄ Mar 2013

Sun

Mon

21

28

4

5

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

8

9

11

12

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

15

16

18

19

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

22 EARTH DAY

23

25

26

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

29

30

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Monthly update to local businesses

 

Fri

2

Attend Farmers Markets

3

Thu

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Attend Farmers Markets

14

Wed

1

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK

7

Tue

May 2013 ►

10

17

24

Attend Farmers Markets

Attend Farmers Markets

Sat 6

Attend Farmers Markets

13

20

27

Preview/Update of Local organizations/events

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 99  

~ May 2013 ~

◄ Apr 2013

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed 1

5

6

Thu 2

Fri 3

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Social Media Scanning Release of Day upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

8

9

10

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

12

19

26

13

14

16

17

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

20

23

24

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of Recipe of the Day the Day the Day Send Press Live Chat with Release of Specialist upcoming/past FACEBOOK event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

27

30

31

28

MEMORIAL DAY Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

 

22

29

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Social Media Scanning Release of Day upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

11

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of Recipe of the Day the Day the Day Event Sponsored DIVISION and/or Co hosted MEETING with Company Shops Market

21

15

Attend Farmers Markets

Sat 4

Attend Farmers Markets

CINCO DE MAYO Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of Recipe of the Day the Day the Day Send Press Release of Live Chat with upcoming/past Specialist – event/news to Attend Farmers FACEBOOK Burlington Times Markets Attend Farmers News Attend Farmers Markets Attend Farmers Markets Markets

MOTHERS DAY

7

Jun 2013 ►

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

18

25

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 100  

~ June 2013 ~

◄ May 2013

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Jul 2013 ►

Thu

Fri

Sat 1 Attend Farmers Markets

2

Attend Farmers Markets

3

4

6

7

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

10

11

13

14 FLAG DAY

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Create summer calendar for print material handout.

17

18

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK Attend Farmers Markets

9

16 FATHERS DAY

30

 

12

19

Attend Farmers Markets

20

21 SUMMER

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

SOLSTICE Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

24

25

26

27 Social Media

28

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

INTERNATIONAL PICNIC DAY

8

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day Finalize and Print Summer Calendar Social Media Post – Event Sponsored Gardening Tip of the and/or Co hosted Day with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

23

5

Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day & Social Send Press Release Media Scanning Day of upcoming/past Print materials and in event/news to ALL person news outlets. communication w/ business’ and markets.

15

22

29

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 101  

~ July 2013 ~

◄ Jun 2013

Sun

Mon 2

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Attend Farmers Markets

21

28

5 INDEPENDENCE DAY

Sat 6

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Attend Farmers Markets

Attend Farmers Markets

9

11

12

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

15

16

18

19

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

22

23

25

26

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

30

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.

29

10

4

Fri

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

 

3

Thu

8

Attend Farmers Markets

14

Wed

1

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK

7

Tue

Aug 2013 ►

17

24

31 Social Media Social Media Post – Post – Recipe of the Gardening Tip of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets. Monthly update to local businesses

13

20

27

Preview/Update of Local organizations/events


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 102  

~ August 2013 ~

◄ Jul 2013

Sun EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS. 4

Attend Farmers Markets

11

18

25

Mon

5

Tue

6

Wed

Thu 1

2

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

10

9 Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

12

15

14

Attend Farmers Markets

16

Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post – – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the Agriculture/Horticulture of the Day the Day Day Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning DIVISION Send Press Day MEETING Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

19

23

20

21

22

Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post – – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the Agriculture/Horticulture of the Day the Day Day Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Live Chat with Event Sponsored Day Specialist and/or Co hosted FACEBOOK with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

26

30

27

28

29

3

Attend Farmers Markets

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day Attend Farmers Markets

Sat

Event with local business.

8

Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post – – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the Agriculture/Horticulture of the Day the Day Day Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Send Press Day Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

 

Fri

Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the of the Day the Day Day Send Press Live Chat with Release of Specialist – upcoming/past FACEBOOK event/news to Attend Farmers Burlington Times Attend Farmers Markets News Markets Attend Farmers Markets

13

7

Sep 2013 ►

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week& Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

17

24

31


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 103  

~ September 2013 ~

◄ Aug 2013

Sun 1

Mon 2 LABOR DAY

FALL BEGINS

29

ENDS Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

9

10

12

13

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Create fall calendar for print material handout.

16

17

19

20

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Live Chat with Specialist FACEBOOK

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Day Event Sponsored and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Finalize and Print fall calendar and print materials.

23

24

25

26 Social Media

27

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of the Day Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

Social Media Post – Recipe of the Day

30 Social Media

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.

Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day Monthly update to local businesses Print materials and in person communication w/ business’ and markets.

 

Sat

6 ROSH HASHANA 7

Attend Farmers Markets

22

Fri

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Attend Farmers Markets

3

Thu 5

Live Chat with Specialist – FACEBOOK

15

Wed

4 ROSH HASHANA Social Media Post – BEGINS Gardening Tip of the Social Media Post – Day Recipe of the Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets

Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of the Day

8

Tue

Oct 2013 ►

11

18

Attend Farmers Markets

Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day & Social Send Press Release Media Scanning Day of upcoming/past Print materials and in event/news to ALL person news outlets. communication w/ business’ and markets.

Attend Farmers Markets

Attend Farmers Markets

14 YOM KIPPUR

21

28

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 104  

~ October 2013 ~

◄ Sep 2013

Sun

Mon

Tue 1

Wed 2

Thu 3

WORLD Social Media Post – Social Media Post – VEGETARIAN DAY Recipe of the Day Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Send Press Release Social Media Scanning Social Media Post – of upcoming/past Day Gardening Tip of the event/news to Day Burlington Times News

6

Attend Farmers Markets

13

20

27

7 COLUMBUS DAY 8

4

Attend Farmers Markets

12

11 Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization

Attend Farmers Markets

Attend Farmers Markets .

14

17

18

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day Agriculture/Horticulture the Day Day Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Event Sponsored Day and/or Co hosted with Company Shops Market

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

21

22

24

25

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day the Day Day Send Press Release Live Chat with of upcoming/past Specialist event/news to FACEBOOK Burlington Times News

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization

28

31 HALLOWEEN

29

23

30

5

Event with Local Business.

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

16

Sat

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

10

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day the Day Day Send Press Release \ of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

 

Fri

Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip of Gardening Tip of the Recipe of the Day the Day Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past Live Chat with event/news to Specialist – Burlington Times FACEBOOK News Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Attend Farmers Markets Markets Markets

15

9

Nov 2013 ►

19

26

Preview/Update of Local organizations/events. Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day Monthly update to local businesses

Notes: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS.


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 105  

~ November 2013 ~

◄ Oct 2013

Sun Mon NOTES: EVERYDAY: REVIEW SOCIAL MEDIA QUESTIONS AND INTERACTIONS. 3 4 DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME ENDS

Attend Farmers Markets

10

17

Tue

Wed

Thu

     

 

Fri 1

Sat 2

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization Attend Farmers Markets .

7

8

Social Media Post ELECTION DAY Social Media Post – Weight Loss Tip Social Media Post – Recipe of the of the Day – Gardening Tip of Day the Day Send Press Live Chat with Release of Specialist – upcoming/past FACEBOOK event/news to Attend Farmers Burlington Times Attend Farmers Markets News Markets Attend Farmers Markets

5

6

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

11 VETERANS 12

Attend Farmers Markets

14

15

Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

18

21

22

19

13

20

25

26 27 HANUKKA Social Media Post Social Media Post BEGINS – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of Social Media Post of the Day the Day – Recipe of the Day DIVISION MEETING Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to ALL news outlets.

 

9

16

23

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization.

28 THANKSGIVING 29 Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Tip of the Day Social Media Scanning Day

Attend Farmers Markets

Attend Farmers Markets

DAY Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the – Weight Loss Tip the Day Day of the Day Send Press Release of upcoming/past event/news to Burlington Times News

Social Media Post Social Media Post Social Media Post GREAT AMERICAN – Weight Loss Tip – Gardening Tip of – Recipe of the SMOKEOUT of the Day the Day Day Social Media Post – Agriculture/Horticulture Live Chat with Tip of the Day Event Sponsored Specialist Social Media Scanning and/or Co hosted FACEBOOK Day with Company Shops Market

24

Dec 2013 ►

Social Media Post – Events for Upcoming Week Tag another organization. Preview/Update of Local organizations/events Monthly update to local businesses

30


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 106    

COOPERATIVE EXTENSION XIII. CONCLUSION

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 107  

Conclusion Since the Alamance County Cooperative Extension was a first time service-learning partner with a strategic campaign class, a substantial learning curve had to be overcome. Our group tailored this plan to make it as basic as possible while still meeting the desire of the organization to spread awareness to community members. This campaign focuses on a very narrow population as a starting place for implementing marketing and public relations techniques. The purpose of this plan is not to actually reach every member of the Alamance community but to be an introduction into using local resources as well as social media platforms to help promote Cooperative Extension. Now that the staff members at Cooperative Extension have this basic plan in place, future work could focus on more in-depth or specific tactics to help enhance awareness among specific populations. One area that could be improved by a future campaign is the amount of online presence Cooperative Extension has. By integrating search engine optimization or SEO into their website, they would show up more frequently in search results and therefore be used as a resource more often. The next campaign could try to improve their website and social media platforms more to make them specifically cater to providing readily accessible information and making the organization more relevant. Another possibility for a future campaign would be to target just one piece of the greater demographic. By continuing upon the idea of partnership with other local organizations and businesses that we laid out in this plan they could gain significant awareness within one area of the population, such as with children and youth programs.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 108   APPENDIX A: SURVEYS 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 109   APPENDIX B: INFORMATION SHEET (to be handed out to the public) 

   

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 110   APPENDIX C: SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDE                           

Social Media Guide By the end of reading this guide on social media you will have successfully learned all the necessary tools required to operate and run a social media account. December 2012

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 111  

Introduction to Social Media: To get started, here are a few basic definitions to help you learn more about Social Media. 1). Social Media: A platform that uses the World Wide Web and other technologies to transition the way people communicate with each other, receive news, find entertainment and inform others in a web based environment. Programs such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube are effectively used to communicate in a technology-based society. 2). Social Media Terms and Conditions: The guidelines implemented by the Social Media programs that must be followed by the user. After you have reviewed the definitions and the different terms and conditions that pertain to each Social Media platform you are ready to learn the basics in creating and managing your social media account along with the responsibilities you must remember each time you use the platform

Creating the Account In order to manage an account through Facebook or Twitter, you must create your own account. Three basic steps to remember when creating an account on a social media platform: 1. Make sure you ONLY put in the required basic information to create the account (name, gender, email address and password) 2. Make sure to include your ACTUAL NAME not an alias. 3. When selecting a password remember to pick something that is easy to remember and unique so that somebody else won’t get accesss to your account Terms and Regulations • Please be advised that all use of social media platforms must follow the guidelines of the state, federal and local laws. • All account supervisors must keep in mind the risks of mixing their personal and professional accounts. Keep them separate. • Please read the Terms of Service of each social media platform • Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/legal/terms?ref=pf • Twitter: https://twitter.com/privacy

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 112  

How To Use Facebook Part 1: Understanding and Using Facebook Steps needed to create a Facebook Fan page: 1). In order to create a fan page you must create your own Facebook account. In order to create your own account you must also create a password. When creating the password keep in mind of security. Think of something that is personal and important to you it will create the perfect password. 2). Plan out how you want the fan page to be so that when it is created it will look exactly how you want it. 3). Login to Facebook and start creating your fan page. Remember to always comply by the your organizations guidelines.

Part 2: How to access your account for a Facebook Fan Page 1). Go to http://www.facebook.com 2). Type in your email address and password 3). In maintaining a fan page you follow the same steps and you click the arrow on the far right hand to begin posting information.

Part 3: What should you put on your Facebook Fan Page? Incorporating website to page: On your information page you have the opportunity to link your organizations own website to your Facebook account. What types of content can be incorporated? If you wish to have a picture on your profile or anywhere on your Social Media platform please contact University Relations.

*Please Note Use of copyrighted material: Always remember to abide with the proper guidelines on copyrighted material such as pictures, videos, audio etc.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 113  

Part 4: Guidelines of posting on Facebook 1). Be responsible: Make sure when you are about to post something that you remember your organization’s policies, missions and values. Be advised that anything that you post can be available to anybody and also accessible by search engines. 2). Acknowledge who you are: If you are representing your organization when posting on a social media platform, acknowledge this right away. If you want to express your own opinions make it known that they are coming directly from you and not the University. 3). Strive to be accurate and concise: Make sure before you post ANYTHING that you get the facts straight. Also remember to always check spelling and grammatical errors. 4). Be respectful and polite: Understand that the content posted to a social media platform does allow comments or discussion of ideas. Be careful in engaging in criticism or debate over a issue. That is generally not tolerated by any organization.

*Please Note: All posts or comments that you create on any social media platform are public information. Make sure that you read carefully the content that you are about to post.

Part 5: Maintaining the page • Make sure to check your page once a day in order to make sure everything is running smoothly and efficiently. • Before updating your page make a plan and always remember to follow it. • If you ever want to use any pictures that are someone else’s property, please contact them first for permission.

Part 6: Ways to upkeep the Comments Section • Always encourage the fans of your social media platform to provide their thoughts and ideas regarding the information you post. •

Remember to make sure this section is always tidy.

Delete all items that pertain to spam or sales/advertising. Flag the post and then delete it.

• If there are any posts that include profanity or personal attacks please remember to respond in a professional manner. Never bow down to their levels.

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 114  

How To Use Twitter Twitter Definitions Tweets: These are the messages that you use to send out to all your followers and the public. Followers: These are the people that follow you and are the ones that will read each thing you write. Following: These are the people that receive all the updates that you send out. @replies: This is a public message that you may send to another person that is not a tweet. The @ symbolizes the name you want to contact for example @mack10708. Retweet: This is where you can share an important tweet with all your followers. *See our twitter and social media glossary for more in-depth definitions!

Step One: How to access your account through Twitter: 1). Go to http://www.twitter.com 2). Type in your email address and password 3). Click sign in to twitter

Step Two: How to find colleagues or friends: • Use the discover tab and select find friends • Use the search contacts index to type in your login information for the desired email address.

A list of your contacts will come up and you can choose to either follow everybody or only a select number.

Step Three: How to use Twitter successfully: • Before you tweet anything always make sure you have a plan in store. You do not want to spend hours trying to figure everything out.

• Pick your followers based upon the subjects that are most important to your department. • You can incorporate the department’s website with Twitter by simply going to your profile and under bio adding the link to your site.

 


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Step Four: Posting on Twitter “Tweeting”: • Always remember to double-check all your tweets before sending them out. Once you hit post you CANNOT edit them

• If you want to link something to your followers then all you have to do is highlight the link that you want and Twitter will automatically create the link using their shortening software. Example: Posting a full URL will be condensed on Twitter to 16 characters.

• Remember that you only have 140 characters, so please write quick and to the point.

Your Twitter content Impersonation: According to the Twitter Rules, you may not impersonate others by deceiving, mislead or confuse others. Trademark: You may not create an account that already has a trademark such as a company, institution, public figure or anything that is known about. Privacy: You may not publish or post anybody's private information such as credit card information, Social Security etc. Copyright: Please follow the copyright procedures that are listed in the Terms of Services. Spam: Twitter does not tolerate any type of spam or abuse.    

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 116     APPENDIX D: SOCIAL MEDIA GLOSSARY   

Glossary 

 

 

Activity Log 

This is part of the Admin Panel of a Page that is found under the Manage menu.  This  provides you with the choice of enabling or disenabling posts to be made by Fans on your  Page.  You can add the dates and alter locations to your posts.      

Admin 

This means you are the administrator of a page.  You will be an admin for any Page you  create, and you can make other people Admins as well.  The Admins have full access to all  the information behind the Page, and can make edits to any and all information. Add new  Admins at Manage‐Edit Page‐Manage Admins.   

Admin Panel 

This is shown above the Cover Image when you go to your Page as the Admin.  It has  several toolbars for updating and locating information along with quick links to  Notifications, Messages, Fans, Insights and Tips.   

Applications (Tabs/Apps) 

These are the programs that external users can add to the Profiles or their Pages.  They  range from games people play with their Profiles to programs that can be used to enhance  and expand your Pages.  On a Profile, they are arranged on the left side of the News Feed.   On a Page, they are shown with images underneath the Cover Image.  They are also known  as Apps (for short) and as Tabs.   

Badges 

These are the boxes seen on other websites and blogs showing the status updates and  other items from the profile or page of the blog writer or site owner.  They can be called  widgets.    

Cover Image 

This is the large image that spans across all Pages and Profiles.  It must be at least 399  pixels wide and the maximum size is 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall.  You upload this  image yourself from a file on your computer.    

 

 


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Fans 

These are the users who wish to your business/product Page.  They have selected the ‘Like’  button on your Page to become Fans.  Fans are not connected to you, only the  organizations’ Profile.  They can see that you are the Admin, but they can only see the  information that you have made public in the Privacy Settings on your Profile.   

Friends 

These are the people you connect with from your personal Profile.  A Facebook user has to  send a ‘friend request’ to you and ask permission to be your friend –you have to accept it  before they are allowed access to your Profile information. You can limit the amount of  information friends have by selecting limited profile options.     Like Button  This button is found under the Cover Image on your Page.  If someone wants to be a Fan of  your Page (or vice versa), they must click this button.  Once someone becomes a Fan, the  posts that you make on your Page will appear on their News Feed.  The Like button will say  ‘Liked’ once you have clicked it.    

News Feed 

This is the main page of your Facebook Profile.  This is the first page you see after you log in  – where you see posts from your Friends and from other Pages that you have ‘liked’.  This is  the page you return to if you select “home” located in the upper right corner.    

Page 

This is strictly for businesses or interests.  When you create a page using the ‘Create Page’  button, you are setting yourself up as the Admin.   

Profile 

This is your personal Facebook account that that has all your information on it.  This is how  you connect with friends and family, post your personal status updates and photos, set  your privacy levels and create Friend Lists.  You create an account from the Facebook  Home page.    

Profile Photo 

This is the smaller square image that is most connected with your personal Profile.  A  smaller picture will show up every time you post something.  For your Profile it will usually  be a photo of yourself and for your Page it might be your company logo.  This size for this  image is 160 x 160 pixels.   

Status 

The box at the top of your News Feed or your Timeline is where you can post an update to  your Profile or your Page.     

 


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Tagging (in Photos) 

Friends who add photos of you can tag you in the photo.  This means it will show up on  your profile listed under pictures.  You can set your Privacy Settings so you receive a  notification when this happens.  Without the setting, tagged pictures will automatically  show up on your profile.    

Timeline 

Timeline is the name for the activity that occurs on a profile or page.  The purpose of  Timeline is to create a history of your business (for your Page) or of your life (for your  profile).  Posts appear in order by date and start on the left side then proceed to the right.     

Wall 

This only appears on your personal Profile.  It shows only the posts that you have made and  that Friends have posted directly to you.  When you click on your name at the top of the  screen, you see the Wall as your Timeline.  To go to someone else’s Wall to make a direct  post, click their name anywhere you see it.  

 


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Guide 

 

  People use Twitter to share information, connect to people and interests, and find out what  is happening in the world.  You write and share messages up to 140 characters long on  Twitter.  These messages (called “Tweets”) are available to anyone who wants to read them,  whether they are logged into Twitter or not.  You can select for your Tweets to be private  so only people selected by you can read them. Your followers receive every one of your  messages in their timelines – a newsfeed of all the accounts they are subscribed to (they  “follow”) on Twitter.     Twitter is a means for businesses to find out what their audiences are immediately talking  about and connect to them through conversation.  It is a means for telling engaging stories,  for participating in cultural events, for broadcasting information, for connecting directly  with consumers, and for driving transactions.  Businesses can also use Twitter to listen and  gather market insights by finding out what their audiences and competitors are talking  about.   

Fundamental Terms of Twitter   

Mention   You can mention another account in your Tweets by starting with their username with the  @ symbol.  For example, Elon Local News recently Tweeted about the Chick‐Fil‐A news  update on campus.  Elon Student Government could respond with “@ELN, here is the most  recent news update…”    

Retweet 

When you see a Tweet by another user that you want to share (spread the word about),  click Retweet below it to forward it to your followers.   

Message 

If you want to privately contact a specific user who is already following you, begin your  Tweet with “DM” or “D” to direct‐message them.     

Hashtag 

Users place a number sign, or # at the beginning of words in their Tweets to categorize  them.  Hashtags are themes for each of your Tweets.  You can start a new hashtag in your  own Tweet, or use one that is popular with other users.  Users can then click on the hashtag  to see all of the same‐themed tweets that exist.  For example, the hashtag #ElonSGA was   


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 120   created for users to Tweet about the Elon University Student Government Association.   When you click on the hashtag, the following page appears with all related Tweets.   

 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 121     APPENDIX E. FACEBOOK PAGE & POSTS 

 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 122     APPENDIX F: TWITTER & TWEETS 

 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 123   APPENDIX G: PINTEREST TUTORIAL   

 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 124     APPENDIX H: PINTERSET PAGE & PINS 

 

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 125     APPENDIX I: PINTERST PITCH TO COUNTY      Cooperative Extension Pinterest Pitch       Pinterest is an emerging social media platform that has rapidly expanded in growth  over the past year. The essence of Pinterest is to provide inspiration for several different  lifestyle categories. Included among these categories are gardening, kids, food, and healthy  living. Users “repin” ideas or pictures they like to serve as a reminder of something they  may like to try in the future. The majority of Pinterest users are females between the ages  of 20 and 45.      There are several benefits to using Pinterest as a way to promote and help increase  awareness for Cooperative Extension. The first benefit is that it is a good way to introduce  users to all the different categories Cooperative Extension provides information on.  Through the creation separate boards, users can quickly identify where the information  comes from. The other main benefit is that it gives you the ability to upload our own  content and link it back to Cooperative Extension’s website or facebook page. Since one of  our objectives for this upcoming year is to increase the number of likes on our facebook  page by 200 percent, this would be a great way to drive traffic back to the site. The more  we can drive people back to Cooperative Extension’s webpage and facebook page, the more  familiar they will be with the organization and the more they will look to it as a valuable  source of information.    According to PR Daily, there are already several nonprofit organizations that are  effectively using Pinterest to drive awareness to their causes. One of these organizations is  Operation Smile. It uses before and after pictures of the children it helps to drive awareness.  In addition they have created a “creative fundraising” board to help interest potential  donors and get more people involved. Another organization currently using Pinterest is the  National Wildlife Foundation. They have created 22 different boards to address all different  types of categories that they champion. This has proved to be a highly effective marketing  tool as just one of their boards has 1,681 followers. It has also given them the chance to  show the wide variety of areas they get involved in, making the organization seem more  valuable.     People are motivated to seek out photo driven content. Pinterest is an easy website  to navigate and use and it appeals to a wide range of people. Adding Pinterest to the social  media platforms we use makes sense because it will help us to achieve our main goal of  increasing awareness about the organization, as well as help to drive more traffic back to  our existing pages.      http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/How_3_nonprofits_successfully_use_Pinterest_125 11.aspx  

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 126     APPENDIX J: PRESS RELEASE TEMPLATE         Cooperative Extension Press Release Template      Contact Information: This is important incase the   story get picked up and the   journalist needs more information for a good story   Contact: Name of Contact Person for this Story  Phone:   Email:     FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (if for some reason you wanted the story help for a period of  time you should say so here)     Date:         Body copy: This should follow an inverted pyramid format. Put the most important  information about your story or event at the top and less crucial information at the bottom.  Keep in mind that editors receive a lot of press releases so they should be able to get the  point of your story after the first sentence or two.       MOST IMPORANT/ NEWSWORTHY POINT OF THE STORY.   subsequent facts.    Notes: It’s always a good idea to add a quote into the press release       Boiler Plate: This should be a pre‐written 2‐3 sentences with information about  Cooperative Extension. It should be a basic “who we are and why we matter” pitch. This  should also include a contact for more information.         ‐ ### ‐ (this sign symbols the end of the press release)  

 


COOPERATIVE COMMUNICATIONS | 127     APPENDIX K: PRESS RELEASE SAMPLE          Cooperative Extension Sample Press Release                                                                                                               Contact: Roger Cobb                                                                                                     Phone: (336) 570‐6740  Email: roger_cobb@ncsu.edu    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   12/03/12           Burlington, N.C.‐ Cooperative Extension will be a hosting a free weight loss clinic at  Company Shops Market in downtown Burlington. The clinic will be held this Thursday, Dec.  6 from 5 to 6 p.m. and is open to all ages.      “Cooperative Extension has a commitment to providing members of the Alamance  community with information to help them live their healthiest lives,” says Roger Cobb,  extension director.     This clinic will focus on finding easy ways to incorporate activity into daily life as well as a  “waistline” friendly recipe using ingredients from local growers. All materials needed for  the clinic will be provided.     Cooperative Extension of Alamance County focuses on providing free, research‐based  information to members of the community. They strive to provide personalized help and  information, as well as tips and suggestions for leading a healthy active life. For more  information about the services and programs provided by Cooperative Extension please  visit their website at http://alamance.ces.ncsu.edu/ or contact Roger Cobb, extension  director at (336) 570‐6740.       ‐ ### ‐       

 


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Cooperative Extension Strategic Communication PLan