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Taking your message directly to the people

October 11, 2005

The web, and especially blogs, provides an easy way to deliver an unfiltered message to the public. Before the advent of the internet, the media was the only way a group could get its message to the public cheaply and efficiently. Now that is no longer the case.

The Washington Post ran a story today on how more and more members of Congress are looking to the web in order to bring their messages directly to the public. Read the full story here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/10/AR2005101001241.html

Higher education institutions can use these same tactics to publicize their positive messages. I hear complaints from many public relations professionals that the press only covers the problems at their institutions. Maybe it is time to circumvent the press and take stories directly to the people.

Develop a blog/website that highlights the good news about your institution. Here are some steps that can help you be successful:

  1. Make the stories interesting
  2. Use viral marketing tactics to encourage readers to pass stories onto friends
  3. Promote the site everywhere – have University officials promote it, include it direct mail newsletters
  4. Incorporate RSS feeds
  5. Make it interactive – include quizzes, discussion areas

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