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5 Techniques to Help Community Media Improve Local Community Outreach

If your current marketing efforts aren’t resonating with your local community, perhaps it’s time to adjust your community outreach strategy.

Effective community outreach allows organizations the opportunity to become active and engaged members of their community. This engagement can have a positive impact that’s mutually beneficial for all involved.

#1. Use social surveys to learn more about your community’s needs.

Surveys help organizations receive direct feedback from their target audience. Use social media to collect necessary feedback from your local community. This feedback helps marketers determine if the organization is reaching its key objectives. Surveys will also help organizations learn if there are gaps — areas where they are falling short — in their service.

Blogger Brian Casel suggests using what he calls the “60-second” survey, mostly because people are busy and you don’t want to take up too much of their time. Short surveys encourage more responses.

#2. Sponsor community workshops.

Marketing dollars spent training members of a community are dollars well-spent. In June 2017, Google hosted a free small business workshop in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The Greensboro Police Department hosted a community traffic stop workshop.

Workshops that address the issues important to the people in your local community allow members of the community to engage with your organization in a personal way.

#3. Get involved in community media.

Ernesto Aguilar, in a Twitter interview, says community radio provides “airtime at, in most cases, zero cost to the community to represent not an advertiser or particular tone of voice, but instead the people.”

Non-profit organizations have great opportunities with community media as this platform can be used at little cost to engage with their local community using public service announcements. Establishing a relationship with community media means NPOs can ensure that their fundraising events, press releases, and other news items are dispersed to the community frequently.

#4. Host community events.

Culver’s restaurant in Beloit, WI hosts a monthly Scoopie Night. This community event raises money for local charities. Scoopie Night connects the community with Culver’s and raises money for charity. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship.

5 Techniques to Help Community Media Improve Local Community Outreach

Boardtracker, a Harley-Davidson dealership located in Janesville, WI, hosts a weekly Bike Night every Tuesday during the summer months. This community event raises money for local non-profits.

5 Techniques to Help Community Media Improve Local Community Outreach

#5. Establish strategic partnerships

In a Forbes article, I stated that it’s important to “focus on negotiating, building and maintaining partnerships with community organizations that are most effective and meaningful for your organization.” It’s important for organizations to identity individuals, groups, and businesses that share their core values.

Strong partnerships allow organizations to develop trust and share resources. After these relationships are established, use the community outreach tips already provided to work with your strategic partners.

Key takeaways:

· How social surveys help with community outreach: Surveys provide organizations with the information they need to determine the needs of their community. This feedback helps organizations provide a better customer experience.

· How community workshops help with community outreach: Informative or educational workshops addressing community needs allow members of the community to engage with organizations in a personal way.

· How community media helps with community outreach: Non-profit organizations that establish a relationship with community media can disperse information frequently at little cost.

· How community events help with community outreach: Community outreach efforts can be greatly improved with events organized around charitable efforts.

· How strategic partnerships help with community outreach: Strong partnerships allow organizations to develop trust and share resources.

Original publication on Mention: 5 Techniques to Improve Local Community Outreach



Genia Stevens is a digital marketer and Forbes columnist.  She is owner and managing partner of Belwah Media, an award-winning integrated digital marketing agency with offices in Madison, WI and Chicago, IL. Genia Stevens is passionate about community media, tech tools, podcasting, and everything digital. Connect with Genia on LinkedIn and Twitter.




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