It takes organization, planning, a solid leader and a supportive team to pull off a public health campaign.
Coles Marketing is in the process of working on a public health campaign for the Seafood Nutrition Partnership, a nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire a healthier America by raising awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood.
Team leader Chris Mercier has a lot on her plate as the team works to hook some meaningful partnerships.
Changing the tide on seafood
In 2014, Indianapolis was one of two pilot cities selected by the Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) to conduct a grassroots public health educational campaign.
“Indianapolis was one of the cities selected because of our high incidents of heart disease and also because we are a population without as much access to seafood, therefore lacking the knowledge of how to select and cook it,” Mercier said.
Only one in 10 Americans follows the USDA Dietary Guidelines of eating seafood twice a week. And the biggest barrier to eating seafood is a lack of confidence to select, buy and eat it.
Coles Marketing was chosen to lead the campaign in Indianapolis — which included a series of educational events in business, healthcare and culinary communities — to raise awareness of the benefits of seafood and how to include it more frequently into daily meals.
Ingredients for a whale of a campaign
This year, as Coles Marketing prepares for a new wave of activities in October as National Seafood Month, Mercier highlighted the essential ingredients to a successful public health campaign:
- Coalition: “Develop a local coalition of community leaders who support your mission and goals,” Mercier said. “It’s important for them to have an influential network of followers or constituents to help carry the campaign’s message.”
- Events: “The goal of these educational events is to bring awareness to large and diverse groups of people about your message — in this case, seafood nutrition and the benefits of eating seafood.” These events include health fairs and cooking demonstrations.
- Health screenings: Depending on the particular health campaign, coordinating screenings may be an important component, whether it’s Omega-3 screenings, or screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes or osteoporosis.
- Communications and media outreach: “Use e-newsletters and other communications to keep your coalition in the loop, offering them information and updates to share with their network,” Mercier said. “And getting the word out through traditional and social media channels helps give that third-party recognition, endorsing and validating the campaign.”
How to reel in success
But what do you need to do to set your team up for achievement? Mercier said:
- Start early. “Get your messaging down and event dates secured in advance as much as possible.”
- Stay organized. “You are handling so many different tasks; you are bound to miss something if you don’t keep organized.”
- Have a committee. “Share duties with your team. Each person can work on a different aspect of the campaign so one member doesn’t have to do it all.”
- Gather a team of experts. “Meet both face-to-face and over the phone with coalition partners and other campaign leaders to get their feedback and support early on in the planning process.”
- Follow up. “It’s your duty to follow up with coalition members, team members and members of the media to keep your campaign on their radar.”
If you need help getting the word out about your health campaign, let us help you capture the message and audience you want. Contact us today!Edit this post
Local SEO continues to change — almost on a monthly basis it seems. But is your business changing with it?
It’s about monitoring how your organization is doing online and always making it a priority to take the next step into SEO evolution — particularly investing in localization efforts.
Optimizing for local search
Launched in July 2014, Google’s Pigeon Update is the latest algorithm providing more useful and accurate local search results tied more closely to traditional Web search ranking.
“User location is now a ranking factor in Google search,” said Coles VP Marketing Brian Coles. “Local search results are included on SERPs (search engine results page) based on a keyword query.”
The changes affect the search results shown in Google Maps as well as the regular Google search results. Therefore, the first thing you need to do is sign up or claim your listing on Google My Business and confirm that listing is accurate and complete.
“Then sign up or claim other local business listings like Yelp, Manta and Yellow Pages, making sure all the information is consistent,” Coles said.
Directories that dominate
“There may be twenty to forty important listing sites depending on the industry,” Coles said.
Some of primary local directories are as follows:
- Yelp – one of the most-used websites for consumers to find a quality review
- Google Business – Google outperforms every other search engine by a huge margin
- Facebook – the second-largest local business directory in the U.S., behind Google Places
- Yellow Pages – an organized directory receiving millions of searches a day
Coles referenced an article by Chris Marentis on “Search Engine Land” that said cleaning up directory listings is “tedious and time-consuming work. But it is work that pays off big time when done right.”
Capture customer reviews
Once you have your business listings set, it’s time to generate reviews from your customers.
“User reviews are one of the many factors that help your local visibility online,” Coles said. “Google tries to emulate the human offline experience as much as possible and is constantly updating their algorithm to better the search experience. A deciding factor in whether a consumer purchases a good or service, both online and offline, is the experience had with that company.”
Gathering those customer reviews can be a bit of a slippery slope. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Promote reviews by asking customers or clients to leave a review on sites like Google Business, Yelp or Facebook.
- Be cautious how you ask. Many review sites don’t like solicitation.
- Leave a laptop at the front desk to capture customers as they leave to ensure the review gets done.
- Respond to reviews, positive or negative, as soon as possible.
Sharing helps searching
“A best practice for all search is to generate relevant, consistent and timely content and to engage with your users through blogs, social media and sharing,” Coles said.
Local SEO is about your website as well as your active social media profiles. The more activity and content on your company’s social media pages the better. Especially if that activity comes from your customers. It increases the visibility of your local listings as well.
Want to get started on your digital media strategy? Coles Marketing has the insight and digital tools to help you with your local SEO campaign and help you reach the right audience in the right way.Edit this post
March is Disability Awareness Month — increasing awareness and promoting independence, integration and inclusion of all people with disabilities.
According to the Indiana Governor’s Council for People with Disabilities, adults and children with disabilities represent slightly more than 19 percent of Indiana’s population. This is the 25th year for Disability Awareness Month, and Hoosiers who want to make a difference can get involved in activities and events throughout the month.
I have the privilege of working with the INDATA Project at Easter Seals Crossroads as one of our clients. And they just recently opened a new technology lab for people with disabilities. From home automation devices and wearable gadgets to robotics, the INDATA Project is making assistive technology accessible and user-friendly for everyone, particularly to those people with disabilities.
“The big challenge is getting people to realize every device someone without a disability can use for convenience can also be used by someone with a disability to enhance that person’s quality of life and independence,” said Brian Norton, the manager of clinical assistive technology at Easter Seals Crossroads. “Assistive technology can have a profound impact on how a person with a disability interacts with people and their environment, excels in school, and performs in the workplace.”
It was amazing to watch the robots and high-tech devices capture the attention of people who came to the open house as well as the media, who highlighted the new lab on air and through social media. And this technology is available to all — the INDATA Project offers loan-interest loans, funding options and an equipment lending library to Hoosiers with disabilities.
“We want people to understand assistive technology doesn’t have to be super expensive,” said INDATA Director Wade Wingler. “This technology lab is a great way to show off the best AT in the most approachable and user-friendly way possible.”
For more information about INDATA, visit www.eastersealstech.com.
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