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MARIAN COUNCIL 3827

• BLOOMINGTON , MN

Publicity Handbook for Event Coordinators Revised March, 2014


Marian Council 3827 Publicity Handbook

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©2013 M. Gigot for kofcbloomington.com Public Relations & Marketing Committee. All rights reserved.

CONTENTS INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................................. 2 WHY DO WE NEED A PUBLICITY HANDBOOK?.............................................................................................. 2 BRAND MANAGEMENT BASICS ..................................................................................................................... 3 USE OF THE NAME & EMBLEM ..................................................................................................................... 3 OUR BUILDING IS NOT “K OF C HALL” ........................................................................................................... 3 ALCOHOL ....................................................................................................................................................... 3 KEYS TO SUCCESS .......................................................................................................................................... 3 SPAM EMAIL.................................................................................................................................................. 4 COMMUNICATION CHANNELS ...................................................................................................................... 4 WORD OF MOUTH ........................................................................................................................................ 4 KOFCBLOOMINGTON.COM ........................................................................................................................... 4 WEEKLY ENEWS............................................................................................................................................. 5 SOCIAL MEDIA ............................................................................................................................................... 6 NEWS RELEASE .............................................................................................................................................. 6 PRINT MEDIA STORY (NEWSPAPER ARTICLE) ............................................................................................... 6 NEWSPAPER & MAGAZINE ADS .................................................................................................................... 7 BROCHURE, FLYER OR POSTER...................................................................................................................... 7 CHURCH BULLETIN ANNOUNCEMENT .......................................................................................................... 7 SCHOOLS ....................................................................................................................................................... 7 BROADCAST MEDIA ...................................................................................................................................... 8 OUTDOOR ADVERTISING............................................................................................................................... 8 YOU’RE NOT DONE YET!................................................................................................................................ 8 ADDITIONAL RESOURCES .............................................................................................................................. 8 TAKING GOOD PHOTOS.........................................................................................................9 INTRODUCTION Thank you for chairing a council Service Program! We want your event to be a success. This brief guide explains how to “get the word out.” Promotion is easy and can reach a broad audience. Long before the Supreme Council issued a guide to event promotion, Marian Council had a website, sponsors, posters, and more. In 2008, Public Relations & Marketing became a standing committee of our council. Its mission is to help publicize events, increase participation, and engage members. We manage the council’s communications, branding, and marketing strategy. WHY DO WE NEED A PUBLICITY HANDBOOK? Attendance at some events has fallen because they revolve around the same clique; little effort is made to invite new people. The era of drawing crowds by posting monochromatic handbills in store windows is over. People hear of activities through social media. They filter hundreds of messages each day. They need to see your ad several times, through several channels, to “sink in.”


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Make a good impression. You are Knights of Columbus public relations. When people think of the KofC, they recall how you behaved. For all the good we do, people talk about times when our members left messes in church, scowled at children, cut in line, tipped poorly, teased immigrants, passed judgment. We can only fix bad impressions by making good ones. Be a good Knight. BRAND MANAGEMENT BASICS The Knights of Columbus brand is a Catholic, family, fraternal, service organization. Our name and emblem are trademarked. Marian Council is entitled to use that identity. The Emblem of the Order should grace all our communications. When communicating with the public as a Knight, use Council stationery or a kofcbloomington.com email account. At least include a proper email signature: Achmed Xiang KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS MARIAN COUNCIL 3827 Marian Hall, 1114 W. American Blvd., Bloomington, MN 55420 Main: (952) 888-1492 Direct: [Your phone number] The Knights of Columbus is a Catholic, family, fraternal service organization. Its global charities support children with disabilities. For more information visit www.kofc.org Marian Council 3827 is the largest Knights of Columbus chapter in Minnesota. Visit us at www.kofcbloomington.com

Show that you represent a polished group by including our hall phone number and website alongside your direct line. Reference the Supreme Council website. Be sure your email identity is your Christian name, not a nickname “AngryBob@wifebeater.com” Writing in ALL CAPS is often considered offensive. USE OF THE NAME & EMBLEM We want people to think of Knights as charitable Catholics, not as controversial. The KofC brand should not be associated with political rallies, pro sports, or other non-religious activities. OUR BUILDING IS NOT “K OF C HALL” Everyone calls it that. But the Knights of Columbus is a society, not a place. Legally, our building is not part of the Knights of Columbus. The council is a tenant of Marian Hall. This is important, for liability. ALCOHOL Our liquor license forbids mentioning alcohol, drink, bar, lounge, beer, cocktail or happy hour in any ad. KEYS TO SUCCESS The “Three Rs” of a successful event are Planning, Teamwork, and Promotion. Plan: make a list of tasks involved in organizing your event… set a date, recruit volunteers, arrange music and food, promote. Figure out how much time is needed for each task, by how many helpers, how far in advance. Are there dependencies? You can’t make posters until you set a price; volunteers can’t sell tickets if nobody printed them. What must be done first? It might be a long list. We recommend… Teamwork: Make friends and volunteer together. Hundreds of members are waiting to be asked! It’s fun to be a team. Combine established leaders (experience) and new members (innovation). Divide tasks and agree when those tasks must be done. Promotion: Start on publicity right away. Add your event to our calendar. Include basic details and a compelling action photo. kofcbloomington.com is your basis for all other promotion, a “home page.” Do you need posters, brochures? Contact the Marketing Committee. We’ll help you post to social media. Be brief. “Just the facts” and eye-catching photos are most effective. Long messages are easily ignored.


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SPAM EMAIL Email services tend to block multi-recipient messages as spam. Be judicious in copying dozens of people repeatedly (i.e. avoid “Reply All”). For this kind of group communication, The Marketing Committee has commercial email tools that are properly branded and compliant with the federal CAN-SPAM law. COMMUNICATION CHANNELS There are many means of communication. You’ll want to use several, to reach more people:       

Broadcast media (radio and television) Websites and social media (Facebook, CitySearch, Patch, MomsLikeMe) Print media (Catholic Spirit, Sun-Current community newspapers, and their websites) Niche publications (parish bulletins and school take-home folders) Outdoor advertising (billboards, sandwich boards, and yard signs) Specialty advertising (posters, bumper stickers, handouts, keychains, golf balls) Sponsored online advertising (Bing or Yahoo Search, clickable website banner ads)

Effective promotional campaigns use many channels. This might sound laborious, but you’re just changing a few words into the correct style for each medium. Here’s how they work: WORD OF MOUTH Audience: Members, friends Cost: None When to Start: 4-6 weeks before your event Personal appeals are a great way to promote your event. But can you tell enough people to fill a room? Yes, tell your friends, but don’t rely solely on this tactic. Use other channels to attract new participants. KOFCBLOOMINGTON.COM Audience: Broad, mainly members Cost: None Begin all promotion here. Our website is our official calendar. Put your event on it. Step-by-step instructions are available from webmaster@kofcbloomington.com

When to Start: ASAP

Bing, Google and Yahoo list our events. The Marketing Committee also uses Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to bring

viewers to our website …and to your event! Give a good description and include a photo.

Above: the homepage of our website, kofcbloomington.com Left: Our council calendar is maintained on the website.


Marian Council 3827 Publicity Handbook WEEKLY eNEWS Audience: Members Cost: None When to Start: 2-3 weeks prior to your event Most Marian Council members receive our weekly email brief. Once your event is on our website, email marketing@kofcbloomington.com and we’ll link to it in the next edition. You can also make an appeal for volunteers. Messages received by 7:00 pm Friday run in Monday’s edition. We only send one email a week – studies have shown that too many emails annoy readers, who stop reading or unsubscribe. Right: Our Monday e-newsletter reaches 80% of Marian Council members. It links to content on kofcbloomington.com Below: We promote on social sites including Twitter and Facebook.

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SOCIAL MEDIA Audience: Global Cost: None When to Start: 3+ weeks prior to your event Notify marketing@kofcbloomington.com to plug your event on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn (previous page). We may notify local bloggers –e.g. MomsLikeMe, Northland Catholic– to tell their readers. Part of social media is the calendar. Everyone has a calendar – churches, libraries, newspapers, radio stations, even cities. They want to post your event so they have the most-complete calendar. NEWS RELEASE Audience: Newspaper editors Cost: None When to Start: 3 weeks prior to your event A News Release is an announcement that is sent to newspaper editors and bloggers. News releases are not advertisements: they are written in journalistic style. Reporters draw from the release in crafting their article, or (more frequently) print it verbatim. News releases are formatted thus: ***NEWS RELEASE*** for immediate release For More Information, contact Moishe Maputo (612) 321-9698 mmaputo@catholic.org FIESTA FOR LIFE FUNDRAISER Bloomington, MN // July 25, 2014 – A Mexican fiesta with all-you-can-eat tacos and live Mariachi music will be held Saturday, July 30 from 5:00-9:00 pm at Marian Hall, 1114 W. American Blvd. in Bloomington. The event is a fundraiser for Ana Muñoz, a 10-year old Edina resident with cancer. There will also be children’s games and a silent auction of Central American art. “We’re helping a neighbor,” said organizer Brad Krawczyk. “People have been very supportive.” The band is sponsored by US Foodservice. Local employers have made cash donations. Muñoz has a rare form of spinal cancer. She receives daily treatments at the University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital. Her family has amassed over $1 million in medical bills. Fiesta admission is $20 for adults, $10 for children; tickets are available at the door. Donations are also accepted at Richfield/Bloomington Credit Union. The event is open to the public. ### --The Knights of Columbus is a global Catholic fraternal philanthropy with 1.8 million members. It had a billion-dollar charitable impact in 2013 through volunteering, fundraising, scholarships, and other aid. kofc.org Marian Council 3827 is Minnesota’s largest KofC chapter, supporting local charities, schools, and civic organizations. kofcbloomington.com

Note the lack of superlatives in this writing style. It is only 100-200 words. The first paragraph announces the “big draw” and key details (what, where, when). Subsequent paragraphs expound on the theme and may include a quote, human-interest or emotional appeal. The last paragraph is a “call to action.” Have a member of the Marketing Committee review your news release prior to submission. PRINT MEDIA STORY (NEWSPAPER ARTICLE) Audience: City editors Cost: None When to Start: 4+ weeks prior to your event There are two ways to attract media coverage: 1) contact the paper with a story idea, or 2) send a news release. If your story sounds interesting, the editor may assign a writer. But a good news release can be published as-is, without paying a reporter. In an era of tight budgets, this is more likely. We have been successful with the Sun/Current family of newspapers (Richfield, Edina, Bloomington, Eden Prairie). The StarTribune has two reporters for its west-metro edition. The Catholic Spirit is the newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis. It has both print and online editions. You want to be on their event calendar. Email spiritcalendar@archspm.org


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NEWSPAPER & MAGAZINE ADS Audience: Broad Cost: $900 - $5,000 When to Start: 4+ weeks prior to event Ads can be purchased in west-metro editions of the StarTribune and Pioneer Press. Local papers include Southwest Journal, CityPages, Nokomis Messenger, and various Sun-Currents. Twin Cities Business and Mpls/St. Paul do not have regional editions. Tiger Oak Media owns magazines for each city’s hotels and visitors’ bureaus. Minnesota Parent, Family Times and Bingo Bugle are found at retailers. Ethnic papers include Zerkalo, La Voz Latina and Latino American Today. Ad rates can be found on the publishers’ websites. Rates are negotiable, especially for long runs (the number of times your ad is displayed) or multiple editions. Website banner ads are available on a monthly or pay-per-click basis. Basic design/layout services are available upon request. BROCHURE, FLYER OR POSTER Audience: Passersby Cost: $1-2/pg When to Start: 8 weeks before your event These materials are affordable and can still draw a crowd. Distribution is limited only by your willingness to deliver them. They are effective for family events. Ask business owners (the average employee will simply throw them away) for help, as corporate citizens. Suggestion: “Hi, I’m with the Knights of Columbus. Will you help us promote a charity fundraiser by displaying this poster? Would you be willing to donate a prize? We appreciate your support. Thank you!”

Ask Knights and friends to do the same at their parishes, schools, gyms, daycare, and workplaces. UGLY FLYERS HURT OUR IMAGE. You may think it frugal to photocopy a black-and-white page of clip art. This spreads the impression of Knights as disorganized. Plan to spend $300+ on quality design and print. CHURCH BULLETIN ANNOUNCEMENT Audience: Parish secretaries Cost: None When to Start: 3-4 weeks before your event Parish bulletin editors prioritize announcement requests. Ours are often omitted. Increase your chances by enlisting a well-known member of each parish to call the secretary with a personal appeal, then forward the announcement in an email. FAMILY DANCE SATURDAY 3/15 at Bloomington Knights of Columbus, 1114 W. American Blvd. All ages welcome, $10 adults/$5 kids, 6-9 pm. Proceeds benefit Holy Family Catholic Adoption Agency. 952-888-1492 www.kofcbloomington.com/dance The DJ will play children’s music and teen-friendly tunes. Organized by Marian Council 3827, serving Bloomington, Edina, Richfield, and south Minneapolis. We are a Catholic, family, fraternal, service organization whose members support the causes of marriage and family LIFE.

Note the brief first paragraph: just key details. This is what appears in a bulletin. The second paragraph isn’t for publication, but explains why the announcement belongs in a particular parish’s bulletin. It can be the footer from your email signature or news release. SCHOOLS Audience: Parents of school-age kids Cost: $10-20 When to Start: 1-2 weeks before your event Every school has means of communicating with parents. Elementary schools use email, blogs or takehome folders. Ask the school secretary for advice concerning announcements. If you submit a flyer, make sure it contains all crucial details (what, where, when), isn’t religious or offensive to atheist activists, and welcomes families. The school may ask you to provide copies. As with church bulletin announcements, schools are likely to ignore requests unless they come from a well-known parent.


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BROADCAST MEDIA Audience: Station managers Cost: None When to Start: 4-6 weeks before your event The Twin Cities is a major media market. Effective TV and radio campaigns require costly production and many, many repeats. Even on minor radio stations, this costs thousands of dollars a week. But broadcasters also air a few public service announcements every week. PSAs do not hype a product; they educate. McGruff (crime prevention) and Smokey the Bear (fire safety) are famous examples of PSAs. Broadcasters look for PSAs with broad appeal, and then only from groups with agency representation. However, three local broadcasters are worth a try: 1. St. Michael Broadcasting (TV), a local EWTN affiliate. Requires 6 weeks notice. 2. Relevant Radio Twin Cities. PSAs are approved in Green Bay. Require 6 weeks notice. 3. KTIS 98.5 FM won’t announce Catholic events, but puts them on its website calendar. 4 weeks notice. OUTDOOR ADVERTISING Audience: General public Cost: $5,000+ When to Start: 8+ weeks before your event Local billboards cost $5,000 a month plus production. Sandwich boards can be used on sidewalks but must be removed nightly. 12”x16” yard signs have short life spans (easily damaged or lost) but are effective. They must be on private property, not on medians or easements. Requires advance planning. YOU’RE NOT DONE YET! Immediately after your event, tell everyone what fun it was. Post your photos on kofcbloomington.com Alert Knights In Action kofc.org/un/en/knightsinaction/kia_news.html Email a link with your thanks to all the volunteers, sponsors and donors. Get more attention for the Knights by sending a post-event news release to print publications. Photos increase your chance of being printed. ADDITIONAL RESOURCES Not a great writer or photographer? We have members who are… enlist help promoting your event. Ask your friends, a council officer, or email marketing@kofcbloomington.com for assistance. Plan ahead and get the help you need. For further reading: Member Social Communications Policy, published by the Knights of Columbus Supreme Council. Request a copy via email marketing@kofcbloomington.com Prnewswire.com is a clearinghouse for corporate news releases. Its submission guidelines may be useful when you write your news release. Getting the Word Out, article on kofcbloomington.com (search by keyword) kofcbloomington.com Website User Guide, available from webmaster@kofcbloomington.com Getting Your Message Across –Knights of Columbus Councils Public Relations and Publicity Guide (#2235) available at kofc.org/un/en/resources/service/council/publicity.pdf current.mnsun.com/submit-an-announcement/ submit a community event to the Sun-Current http://www.the-dma.org/antispam/EmailBPFINAL.pdf best practices for emailing large groups


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