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Effective Advocacy When Working with the Media

Working with the media is a key way CCC strives to accomplish our mission to ensure that every child is healthy, housed, educated and safe. Our staff keep a constant eye on the latest statistics, policies and budget issues impacting children in New York, and we share this information regularly with the media to raise public awareness and prompt action from elected and appointed officials.

On November 13, CCC’s Executive Director Jennifer March-Joly participated in a panel discussion hosted by Baruch College’s Center for Nonprofit Management and Strategy that provided guidance for nonprofits in working with the media. CCC Board member and FPWA CEO and Executive Director Jennifer Jones Austin also participated in this panel, as well as moderator Sam Roberts of the New York Times, Carla Zanoni of DNAinfo.com, and Courtney Gross from NY1.

Tips from the Experts

  • Choose the issues that your organization will be an expert on so that your work with the media is consistent with your mission and goals.
  • Get to know reporters who are most likely to cover your issues by reading the paper, watching the local news, and following news organizations through social media.
  • Build relationships with reporters covering your issues and reach out to them personally. Invite a reporter to meet for breakfast so they can get to know you and your organization.
  • Look to electronic news sources, radio and community press in addition to the major daily papers and television networks.
  • Make sure your pitch is current, accurate and compelling. Have ideas ready to help “put a face” on the issue, such as data, anecdotes, pictures/video, etc.
  • Provide information on background when you cannot speak on the record about an issue that is critical to your mission. Be clear from the start if you are speaking on background and explain the reasons why you cannot be on record.
  • Engage your networks. If you are not the right source for a story, refer the reporter to someone who might be better positioned to speak on the issue. Partner with like-minded organizations to provide different perspectives on an issue you are pitching.

CCC Resources

Visit our Press Room for examples of CCC’s work with the media. For additional tips on how to influence public policy, laws and budgets, visit CCC’s What is Effective Advocacy page.

comments

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One Comment

  1. Chris Stern Hyman
    Posted November 15, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Excellent tips from the experts! So glad CCC shared its expertise in what sounds like a robust discussion of how to engage the media. Great job.

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