The Situation: A non-profit organization that offers online vocabulary and spelling practice requested a public relations campaign to promote an international competition designed to help students become confident readers and writers.
The Results: Through effective message development, news announcements and media relations, C. Blohm & Associates drew worldwide interest and remarkable participation to the inaugural competition, while raising visibility of the non-profit organization in the education and consumer markets.
First-ever International Competition
Dedicated to improving literacy skills, the non-profit organization created an online international competition designed to test young students on their vocabulary and spelling skills. Our client sought to raise awareness of the event among educators, parents and students to increase participation, and boost visibility of the organization and its services in the education and consumer markets.
Publicizing the Learning Opportunity
To increase awareness and participation, CB&A worked in tandem with the client to publicize the competition through message development, news announcements and media relations efforts as part of a six-month strategic public relations campaign.
The first phase focused on building a solid foundation of key messages, as this was the first year of the international competition. CB&A developed messaging that emphasized the benefits students receive from participating in the program, as well as addressed the rules and guidelines associated with the competition. In addition, a comprehensive media kit was created to serve as a complete resource for the media.
During the six-month period, CB&A drafted and distributed six news releases to promote the competition to education trade and consumer media. Topics included the event launch, number of participants, back-to-school announcement, National Spelling and Dictionary Day, as well as the competition finalists and winners. All announcements were posted in a multimedia format featuring images and links.
Literacy is the foundation of education, and our media relations efforts leveraged the demand for literacy skills against the need for students to have a confident command of spelling and vocabulary. CB&A relied on its long-standing relationships with education trade and consumer media to secure coverage of the competition and organization in print and online publications.
Within five minutes of distributing the event launch news release, a well-known education blogger picked up the announcement and shared the competition with her readers. This was the first of many articles secured, including 20 key feature articles, for a total of 2.3 million impressions in education trade and consumer media outlets. Coverage of the competition appeared in publications such as Education World, Instructor and Chicago Parent.
Regular communication and outreach to members of the media drew worldwide interest and phenomenal participation to the inaugural competition, all of which was instrumental to the overall success of the event. In addition, the organization experienced heightened visibility in both the education and consumer markets to position it as the leading expert on spelling and vocabulary education.