Parkland PR lessons: Make the change—fight til it’s right!

by | Mar 13, 2018 | Analysis, Public Relations

Following the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, it is evident that we need to come together to take action and push for change.

Organizations across the world support a variety of causes, but it’s important to make sure the message reaches the public.

Implementing a strategic integrated marketing plan, coupled with various acts of support can help address key concerns on a large scale and spark change.

What are you about?

Let people know what you’re all about. Keep people updated about event schedules, pivotal updates and recaps. How can people contact you? Information on any organization should be easily accessible to anyone who wants to get involved.

Get out there

Did you know March For Our Lives will be held on March 24 in Washington D.C.? The BoardroomPR team will join in and encourage a 17-minute walk out in support of the 17 who lost their lives on that tragic day.

Snail mail

Emails can be overlooked. Grab a pen and paper and do things the old-fashioned way. Write letters to your local law makers. With a little bit of research, you can take that extra step to getting in front of lawmakers. Let them know you and your supporters are serious about making a change.

Express yourself

National press starts out locally. Pen a letter to your hometown editor voicing your opinion. How are the events in your community related to what is going on around the country? For South Florida, these recent events are proof that anything can happen anywhere at any time.

Show support

Even the smallest bit of encouragement can go a long way. Volunteer. Attend events. Share information on your social media channels. Donate to official fundraisers. Wear a t-shirt to stand in solidarity with the cause. The smallest gust of wind can spark a wave half-way across the world.

Dial up

Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone. Call newsrooms and radio stations. Let them know that what you’re advocating for is important. Be persistent. Be prepared to put in some work to convince them why they should care. Invite them to attend events to learn more. Offer a recap, including photos and video for those who cannot attend. If you package it together for them, you can easily turn no coverage into a story on the next newscast.

Share on social

Social media is powerful. You can reach a large number of people with a simple click from your desktop or mobile device. Start an online community group. Here, people can go to discuss how they feel, what the next move should be, and brainstorm ideas. With the way social media platforms are set up these days, consider investing a few dollars towards boosting your posts. This allows you to hand select your audience based off of age, location, interests, gender, occupation, education and more. Pay-for-play puts you in full control of your message, and makes sure it is not only reaching an audience, but reaching the right audience.

PRO TIP: Be consistent in all of your marketing and social media content. A hashtag is similar to a slogan or logo in that it will create brand recognition. Hashtags can be used to search for related news and posts, and allows people to join in on the conversation. #NeverAgain became the hashtag used to advocate for change in memory of the Parkland victims. This is their mission, to never again have events as such occur. It is simple, recognizable and powerful.

Come together

What impacts one person will impact others. Partner with related associations, lobbyists and officials. Attend town hall meetings or participate in a march. Donate supplies for signs and t-shirts or food for those who are out rallying all day. Remind people to vote in elections.

Fight until it’s right

The path to change will not be easy. You will face setbacks and opposition. Through it all, always remember that there will be someone on your side, supporting all of the effort you put in. Don’t give up. Nothing worth having comes easy. Continue to fight for what you believe in. You CAN help make a difference. If you don’t see a change, be the change.

Julie Talenfeld
Julie Talenfeld is the president of BoardroomPR, , a full service PR and marketing firm based in Fort Lauderdale, FL.