You can plan the best program in the world, but if the word doesn't get
out about your effort, how can the program help anyone? You can create
greater support for your efforts through publicity and promotion. Publicity
is generally defined as working with local media radio, TV, print
and cable to place stories about your Designated Driver program.
Promotion activities include different types of events, brochures, signs,
buttons, T-shirts, ribbons anything distributed to the community
that raises awareness of your program, the impaired driving problem and
why people should designate sober drivers. This section shows you how
media support can help raise awareness of your community's impaired driving
Start the outreach effort by appointing an experienced public information
officer or publicity chairperson who knows and understands the local media.
Another important step is research. Become familiar with local reporters and
writers and stay up-to-date on the issues they write about. This will help
you pitch your story to the media. It is important to develop interesting
and appealing story lines, or events that tell your story.
CHOOSE YOUR OUTLETS
No matter where you are, you should be able to find media outlets to convey
the Designated Driver messages to the public. The following is a list of media
outlets you should contact:
- cable and local television
- radio stations,
- daily newspapers (urban
- weekly newspapers
(urban and/or community-based) and
- industry magazines.
CHOOSE YOUR TOOLS
There are a number of different communication tools you can use to convey your
message to the media. Before you begin, you should understand what each tool
is, and how it fits into your media outreach activities.
Advisories "sell" your event to the media. By explaining the who,
what, when and where of your activity. It should explain why your event
is newsworthy. It should be sent at least three days before the event and
followed up by phone calls to assignment desks and reporters.