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What Messaging is Effective in Certain Communities (part 3) by Carla Rachkowski Spreading the word about Fast Forward New Mexico in each of our 16 locations is based on a grassroots, community-focused awareness and outreach model. In part 1 of this blog, I described the messaging we created to bring the vision of our tag line “Connecting you to a World of Opportunities” to a personal level and make it relevant to people in each community. A series of posters were designed based on this messaging. When the project began, I believed I knew which messages would work best in each community. However, I found out that my preconceived notions weren’t always correct. The choice of which messages to lead with in each community was based on interviews with the Library Director, community leaders, and community organizations. I spoke with as many people as possible in order to increase awareness about our program, and to get a sense of the community’s true personality and profile.

Gallup –Due to the high rate of unemployment and need for basic computer and Internet education, the primary message here became “Using the Internet can help you to apply for jobs and fill out government forms”. One third of the city’s population has native roots, and the faces used on the posters were primarily Native American. Aztec – Although there are several Native American reservations in the area, nearly 80 % of Aztec’s population is White. Local leadership pointed out that there were quite a few retirement communities in the area. The primary messages became “Using the Internet can help you to stay in touch with family and friends and find health information”, and the faces used on the posters were older Anglo professionals and couples with their grand children. Albuquerque- In Albuquerque, we taught classes in Spanish. Our contractor, La Communidad Habla, pointed out that family connections and increased opportunities for the next generation are extremely important in the Spanish-speaking community and our primary message in Albuquerque became “Using the Internet can help you assist your kids with their homework and keep them safe online”. Faces used on the posters were Hispanic and the text was in Spanish. Las Cruces –The Hispano Chamber of Commerce was a sponsor at our kick-off event and the city seemed very interested in helping small businesses. The primary message in Las Cruces became “Using the Internet can help small businesses increase profitability”. Both Hispanic and Anglo faces were used in the messaging. Socorro –Socorro is the home of New Mexico University. Educational issues in the forefront of every conversation I had with community members and organizations. This community really seemed to grasp the positive implications of our “How to Take an Online Class”, and our primary messaging became “Learning to Take online classes can increase educational opportunities”. Hispanic, Native American, and Anglo faces were used in the messaging.


What Messaging is Effective in Certain Communities (part 3) by Carla Rachkowski  

A series of posters were designed based on this messaging. When the project began, I believed I knew which messages would work best in each...

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