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The Wall Street Journal City Hall Reporter
Michael Howard Saul
"The Wall Street Journal is the largest-circulation newspaper in the nation, with an average weekday circulation of more than 2 million, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations' most recent report. In April, the Journal launched "Greater New York," a stand-alone section dedicated to coverage of the New York metropolitan area. The full-color section appears six days a week (Monday-Saturday) in all print editions of the Journal in the New York area, including parts of Long Island, Connecticut and New Jersey. The section includes reporting on city and state government, politics, education, crime and courts, real estate, health, philanthropy, arts and culture, sports and plenty more. The section's mission is to create a complete newspaper -- exclusively about the New York area -- to serve readers in the Journal's single largest market. When we launched the section, Robert Thomson, editor-in-chief of Dow Jones & Company and managing editor of the Journal, said, "Our section is about New York for New Yorkers. . . As others have retreated, we have been investing in content - there has never been a larger market for high quality news and analysis, and the greatest market of all is New York." In addition to the printed section, we offer continuously updated content and online-only features on WSJ.Com. Our blog, called "Metropolis," offers posts on the day's news and a wide variety of topics. We are very proud of what we've accomplished this year and look forward to even more success in 2011. So, if you have a story idea for us, please drop us a line. If it involves the New York region, we're interested in hearing about it.
Email Michael Howard Saul at

Non-Profit Classifieds

New York City Coalition Against Hunger seeks a
Advocacy/Communications Coordinator 

Sadie Nash Leadership Project seeks a
Development Associate 

Helping is Easy
Seeks a PR Professional to join their Board.

If you have a listing you would like included in the February newsletter, please email Anat

Upcoming Workshops

UJA Workshop " Developing a Successful Strategy to Tell Your Story and Get Your Organization Covered by the Press"  Monday, Dec 13, 2010.  Open to UJA members only.


United Way workshop "Using Communications to Successfully Engage your Stakeholders, Develop New Aidiences, and Help Achieve Your Organizational Goals."  Thursday, January 13. 2011.  Open to United Way members.

Twitter Highlights

Have you tried to become a #squidoo supported #nonprofit


   DIOSA | Communications: Twitter Best Practices for Nonprofit Organizations


Great use of Foursquare #socialnetwork by a #nonprofit @redcross


#nonprofits should use video 4 #communications - 3 Things Any Video Needs to Go Viral via @mashablevideo @mashable

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Issue: 2December/2010


2010 is almost over.  With the new year just ahead, now is a good time to reflect on our communications efforts and plan for more productive work in the year ahead. 

If your non-profit is like most others, you don't have a communications plan in place.  I have outlined in this newsletter steps you can take in the next few weeks to get a plan together by January.

If you forward this newsletter using the "Forward this Email"  button on the left, you'll be entered to win 3 free hours of communications consulting that you can use towards creating your 2011 communications plan, or for any other communications needs.

As always, I welcome your questions, suggestions and comments.  I wish you a very happy and healthy holiday season and a warm and prosperous New Year.


Communications Plan Made Easy

I recognize that most non-profits have limited time and resources.  Following are steps you can take to create a plan that will help you achieve your organization's goals. 

Set Your Goals

Getting press isn't a goal, unless you want press clips to use as wallpaper.  Neither is "increased awareness", since it's completely unrealistic for you to reach the hundreds-of-thousands or millions of people in your neighborhood or city.

Goals must be clearly defined and measurable.  Examples include: increase individual donations by 10% or double the applicant pool.  The goals should fulfill the mission of your organization.  Pick one or two goals at the most to get started.

Identify Your Target Audiences and Understand How to Reach Them

Identify the people you need to reach to achieve your goals and create a general profile for them.  You need to understand what will motivate them to take the action you want them to take (to achieve your goal) and how best to reach them (what media do they follow, do they use email, social media, is snail mail best?)  To get some of these answers, you might have to ask some of them.

This information is very important.  It will clarify what you should promote and how you should promote it.

Conduct a Communications Inventory

Identify what you are doing currently to communicate with your target audience and how well it's helping you achieve your goals.

Create a Calendar of Events and Opportunities

Identify all events and organizational and programmatic milestones for the coming year.  Cross off everything that won't help you achieve your organizational goal.  If you are not sure, ask yourself "will (insert target audience) take action to help me achieve my goals based on this event/issue/milestone? 

Once you have a list of events and milestones likely to motivate your target audiences to take action, plot them out on a 12 month calendar.

Choose Your Communications Tools

For each event or milestone on your calendar, identify the communications tool you will use to reach your audience. Tools include: newsletters (electronic or print), social media, traditional media, letters, emails, advertising, and more.  You can find more information on different tools and selecting the right tools on pages 12-13 of my Communications Basics presentation.

You might choose more than one tool for each event or milestone.  For example, you might choose to include something in your newsletter, on Facebook, and in an email.

Review and Revise

Since none of this is an exact science, you should set up a schedule to review your progress and assess whether the plan is helping you achieve your goals.  You'll likely have to adjust the plan along the way as you discover what works and what doesn't.

Good luck!

Media Relations

You get more bees with honey and you get better media coverage by being a responsive and helpful partner to members of the press.

I recently managed the communications for the opening of the new Roosevelt Island Tram.  The story, for the most part, sold itself, but meeting the needs of all the interested media took careful planning and coordination.

Tram Press Conference
Leslie Torres, President of RIOC speaking at the tram launch press conference

The morning of the launch, every television station in New York City was broadcasting live from the event, starting as early as 5am.  The tram wasn't yet open to the general public, but every station wanted to ride the tram, wanted a guest or more to interview, and wanted to broadcast live from inside or in front of the tram.  Getting all those outlets what they wanted and making them all as happy as possible was my job, and it resulted in amazing media coverage.

Telling  Your Story

Last month, I conducted a workshop on how to develop and successfully pitch press stories.  The event was sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council and hosted by the New York Post.

Most of the participating non-profits had good stories to tell - from hosting an event to wrap gifts for children in Mexico, to launching a new diabetes management community program, to hosting a march against racial-profiling. 

Workshop at the NY Post office
Anat helps attendees understand how to craft a compelling story

It was a reminder that most, if not all, non-profits have press-worthy stories to sell.  For information about developing and pitching a story, check out pages 11-22 in my presentation.  For advice on creating a media list, click here.

Try setting a goal of issuing 3 to 4 press releases a year, and make it part of your communications plan.