Climate Showcase Communities
   Local Climate and Energy Program
                                Effective Practices for Implementing  Local
                                Climate  and  Energy  Programs:
                                Traditional Media Strategies
 Lessons Learned by Communities for Communities
 The views expressed in this document are those of the Climate Showcase Communities grant recipients. U.S. EPA does not endorse any
 products or commercial services mentioned.
WHAT IS IT?
Traditional media—such as TV, radio, and print—can bring attention to newsworthy
programs, raise their visibility, and motivate participation.
WHY DO IT?
•   Traditional media is the main source of information for many people. It can help you
    reach a wide range of audiences.
•   Many traditional media channels are free, such as newspaper stories, radio interviews,
    and public service announcements.
•   Some traditional media organizations also have blogs, Facebook, Twitter feeds, and
    other social media. They can do a lot of social media work for you.
WHAT WORKS?
•   Cultivate relationships with reporters and encourage them to write multiple stories
    covering the evolving components of your program.
•   Look for opportunities to pitch success stories to the media.
•   Invite the media to cover special, memorable events, such as groundbreaking
    ceremonies, ribbon-cutting events, or community stewardship projects.
•   Write press releases in the form of articles and consider incorporating human interest
    stories. Make them easy for the media to use.
•   Engage local political leaders or other high-profile community members in program
    activities and issue press releases about their involvement.
•   Develop media sponsorships or event co-sponsorships.
•   Ask the media to publish ads for free as a way of sponsoring your program's events.
•   Leverage paid media by submitting public service announcements and requesting in-
    kind media services.
•   Send reporters a follow-up note after the story is published and thank them for their
    accuracy or let them know if they missed something.
WHAT SHOULD YOU WATCH OUT FOR?
•   Do not overthink (or overspend) the message.
•   These stories can have a short-term effect and may not motivate behavior.
•   It can be hard to maintain the media's interest over a long period of time.
•   The media may have different priorities when promoting your story. They may spin the
    story in a way that they consider more interesting.
WHAT RESOURCES HAVE PROJECTS FOUND TO BE USEFUL?
MailChimp—Email newsletters: www.mailchimp.com
M it.
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                                                                         f. t*  -I*
                                                                          ••  nf  IB
                                                                  "After the local paper ran
                                                                  a story about our program
                                                                  on Sunday, we came into
                                                                  the office on Monday
                                                                  morning and found dozens
                                                                  of messages from new
                                                                  clients."
                                                                  Alex, Sustainable Connections,
                                                                  Bellingham, Washington
                                                                  "Everyone loves to see
                                                                  themselves on TV. When it
                                                                  is publicized, they will
                                                                  invite all of their friends
                                                                  and family."
                                                                  Climate Showcase Communities
                                                                  project lead
ŁEPA
United States
Environmental Protection
Agency
                                         April 2015
EPA-430-F-15-012

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