Comms delivery group meeting report 8 July 2014
By Ed Mitchell 17th July 2014
Communications Group meeting
Tuesday 8th July 2014 (Ben’s birthday)
11:00 – 13:15 (with break)
Totnes and gotomeeting online
Naresh talk with Amber about roadshows findings and Anna Guyer
Rob let Sophy know about Chris Johnstone interview – send transcript
Rob mail comms list and propose some framing questions and intentions for September’s theme for discussion
Sam write social media test project outline and proceed with project
Link up RE local mktg and TN local mktg for roadshows
Review themes and months quarterly (ie not monthly)
Editorial theme setting to continue to be done on a monthly basis
August has a non-theme: ie no editorial work
September theme: “Making space for nature”
October theme: “Connection” (preliminary proposal)
Do project-ette to test headlines for new items and analyzing their spread and effectiveness and proceed
● Fi: yes
● Rob: yes
● MikeT: yes
● MikeG: late
● Sophy: apologies
● Naresh: yes
● Ben: yes BIRTHDAY BOY!
● Sarah: yes
● Sam: yes
● Ed: yes
Roles for the meeting:
Keeper of time: Ben
Keeper of the record: Naresh
Keeper of the heart: Fiona
Keeper of the online facilitation technology: Sarah
Notes of key points and actions and agreements:
Highlights from the web front (Sam, Mike, 10 minutes, (I))
Web site visits are declining slightly from last month, and we are seeing a plateau / decline in the long term
Same story in social media, not increasing, Sam didn’t have as much time to do this.
Feb was a high for interaction, spring lower Feb was the Terminating Amazon account which was very popular
Newsletter- open rates is a good result- top stories TN strategy, digest for June, what’s happening in the world of transition. economic enablers.
Mail chimp is not strictly correct as to numbers who open the newsletter!
Rob surprised by numbers who open the newsletter from USA being top.
Fi- gender balance looked like it was getting gradually worse, but actually that isn’t the case when comparing to the gender balance in the longer term (recorded in the newsletter)
Fiona – info on REconomy marketing plans – 5 mins
Anna Lodge doing comms marketing – plan ready in early september
Anna and Jo report to Doing meeting in September, and will link into other TN comms work, and how will this fit into TNs plans
How international are those plans? They are UK specific
What are the good comms practices so far – comms is being used as the lens/glue for our other work packages, Anna still brings objectivity into the work at this stage, very important..
Using an external consultant has been very useful for the work
Naresh – Road show marketing
Plan in google doc – to plan for now and give subsequent shows some advice
TN is putting out through own channels (newsletter, homepage box, Sam and Naresh’s landing page, tweeting, fb-ing,) = quite standard channels – and relying on local marketing as they are local events
– will ask in lancaster: where did you hear about this?
BEN: are we coaching Lancaster on their comms/marketing?
Naresh – this was a learning from T-thursdays – to provide comms support to TIs – haven’t done it this time. Would be great to have a local marketing coaching plan.
ACTION: Naresh talk with Amber about roadshows findings and Anna Guyer
Fi: Anna Lodge for RE roadshow – will be providing support for local marketing and comms for REconomy day – also will produce an event-in-a-box guide for local REconomy events later this year, much will be relevant to any kind of local event including local marketing how-tos.
AGREED: important to link up RE local mktg and TN local mktg
SAM: has set up a location-based twitter list for targeted messages locally
Naresh: finding local contacts regionally based has been a big problem. Find 80-90 local contacts and mailed out to them – and got small response –
AGREED: include this piece about marketing in the lessons learnt meet 24/7
Much discussion around the usefulness of our contacts database
Group development discussion monthly rhythm
See: TN Comms group Terms of reference for the detailed monthly rhythm
– Ed ran through the proposed monthly rhythm which was generally accepted
Q: Where do we do a review of last month and celebration?
– discussed and agreed to review themes quarterly
AGREED: review themes and months quarterly
Q: How many articles do we do a month?
– not discussed although the general goal at the moment is to write *less* of a higher quality
Q: Quarterly plan and review?
– want to keep themes topical and connected to the zeitgeist; a 4 week run in works ok, and we are responsive as we want to be.
AGREED: Editorial theme setting to continue to be done on a monthly basis
Finding enough interesting material in a month was not easy in politics month was not easy
Celebration as a quarterly event is fine.
for people already interested in Transition or
people who are outside and might want to come in?
Audience analysis needed!
Do we want to set the agenda or react to what’s happening in the world? both!
What is our intention around this Theme?
What are we trying to draw out?
Important that we are clear collectively
Good to include an audience analysis as part of the intention
The comms strategy might change how we do this, monthly rhythms, etc.
Can we ask for themes to movement?
– tried but hasn’t worked to date
This month’s theme: quick overview and discussion
SB: be good to be clear what Chris / I would cover differently Rob will send transcript of Chris’s interview to Sophy so she can see. (Rob will discuss this with Sophy)
Tricky when it’s hard to get hold of people.
Crystal Palace is a really good piece.
Useful to have Ed to bounce ideas off of
Have links to the framing piece would be a good resource- buttons on T culture page
ACTION: Rob let Sophy know about Chris Johnstone interview – send trancript
Down time during August? – or who wants to be site editor for the month?
AGREED: August has a non-theme: ie no editorial work
Next month’s theme discussion and choice (September)
Exploration of theme’s intention and framing- Ideas-
AGREED: September theme: “Making space for nature”
from Rob’s interview with George Monbiot- role of nature [Fi and the wild? and why it matters, nef have some work on nature and economy am presenting with them in London Thurs.]
Effective groups resource will be around: OCT/NOV
AGREED: (preliminary proposal): October theme: Connection: lots of energy:
The challenge of connection how do we create connection across the global network, in Transition and beyond – feedback from the hubs meeting
Connection and Effective Groups together
October consultation on the Transition story
Sophy and Naresh going to New Cultural stories conference in Findhorn
Proposal for September- Making space for nature – agreed!
Preliminary proposal for October- Connection
Proposal – Noticed that we have not had time to get behind the theme, it needs fleshing out ACTION: Rob mail comms list and propose some framing questions and intentions for September’s theme, and we do that over the web, and possibly phone conversations. agreed
Tactics feedback from group meet (Sam, Naresh)
This is strongly related to the Transition story.
We need a small number of messages that frame arguments and speak to people, and tell our story.
AGREED: Sam to write short proposal to test headlines for new items and analyzing their spread and effectiveness and proceed
ACTION: Sam write social media test project outline and proceed with project
Story project update
Communications strategy update
Sarah has sent mails round with these updates to all staff with status update and next steps
Reflections on the meeting
– got started late which affected the meeting
– internet crashed in Totnes just before meeting
– We are developing it well, liked different sections on the agenda
– We need to all look at the agenda before hand
– Things at the end of the meeting gets rushed
– As well as allocate time to sections, it would be good to prioritising theme
– This is often where the staff get together and work through ideas together; can we link this to the staff meetings?
– Too many things on the agenda
– Appreciation to time keeper record heart holders