Strategic communications plan developed for a Brazilian nonprofit organization as the capstone assignment of my Georgetown University master’s degree in Public Relations and Corporate Communications.
Casa do Amor is a nonprofit organization from Vitória da Conquista (Conquista), Brazil that offers love, housing, food and care for underprivileged out-of-town cancer patients while they are undergoing cancer treatment in the city. The organization has a ten-year history of determination and success that started with its founders’ dream to positively transform the world. Even without having the money to build the organization that she envisioned, Maria do Carmo was able to achieve her dreams inspiring the community with her enthusiasm. Slowly and steady she was able to gather the necessary people and resources to help cancer patients in need of housing and care. She was able to professionalize the organization services and now it helps an average of 100 patients and caregivers per month, with 15 employees, and the steady volunteer assistance of doctors and other health professionals.
The demand for Casa do Amor’s services is constantly increasing and it needs to continuously expand capacity to continue providing for its beneficiaries needs. The organization is well recognized in the city and has the support of the general public, the media and the community. The communications challenge is to leverage the positive reputation that the organization has in Conquista and surrounding region to increase awareness and support for its services, or else it will not be able to expand capacity and continue providing for the increasing number of incoming patients.
This strategic communications plan will leverage the support of individual donors, corporate donors and volunteers to reach the goal of increasing awareness about the importance of the organization in order for it to raise donations and extend the reach of services. The strategies recommended are: To synthesize messages to improve communications through digital media platforms; to develop a volunteers training program; to reach out for young volunteers at universities; to offer varied partnership opportunities and communicate results to corporate donors; and to use personal communication methods and traditional media to motivate more individual donations.
The implementation of this five months campaign is projected to cost US$3,300. Costs could be kept low due to anticipated sponsorship from corporate partners to produce marketing products, and to the collaboration of volunteers. In return, Casa do Amor will achieve its goal of expanding the reach of its fundamental services to the people of Conquista and surrounding region in need of love and assistance while fighting against cancer.
To read the whole plan please click on the following link:
Watch this video to see how a Georgetown PRCC masters alumna is using Communications Strategies to make a difference in the world.
I would like to share with you some practical tips for persuasive writing that I learned from professor Mike Long at Georgetown University. Writing to persuade can be an intimidating task, but if we prepare ourselves, organize our thoughts, and use convincing arguments we can do it successfully.
Before you write a word, spend time thinking
Writing is the process of registering ideas on paper. If your thoughts are not clear your writing will not be clear. To start writing you must be able to identify and order the main ideas that you want to communicate. Make a list of the big points you need to make and then narrow these points down to the absolutely necessary. If you try to cover too many things you will lose the opportunity to persuade the reader on your most important points. When you are able to summarize your thoughts in one or two sentences, then you are ready to write a clear and convincing text.
The key is organization
After organizing your thoughts it’s time to organize your writing. Use the introduction, development and conclusion structure to present you ideas in the text. In the introduction you should clearly state the point of the document to get the attention of the reader early on. Use the introduction to present the main ideas that you will be discussing. In the development you will argue your points. Make sure to pick one main idea for each paragraph and argue it using evidence. In the conclusion you restate your big points and give the reader a sense of closure. Be careful not to introduce new ideas in the conclusion because main ideas should be fully argued in the body of the text.
Business writing has the purpose of informing and persuading the reader, which is done through arguing with evidence. When you add evidence to prove your points it shows that you have spent time considering and researching the subject and that your conclusions are worth considering. Evidence comes in different forms. They could be facts, statistics, logic thinking, case studies, history, personal experiences, examples and even anecdotes. Illustrate your main ideas with evidence and you will have a better chance to persuade your audience.
Who is the audience?
If your purpose is to inform and persuade, you will have to consider your audience to choose the best argument. Show that you care for the reader to understand you points. Explain things using language and examples that are familiar to them. Your text should have the ability to inspire and to communicate complicated things in simple ways.
If you have a call to action, do it in the end.
If you want the reader to do something you must state your call to action clearly in the end of your text. You can also use calls to action throughout the piece but readers remember best the last thing they see. For this reason the last words of your text should be your call to action.
These tips have been valuable to me and I hope they will be helpful to you. Convincing someone of something is easier when you know exactly what you want to convey and use powerful evidence tailored to the audience that will read your text.
I designed this infographic to illustrate the strategic communications framework that we use on the Georgetown Public Relations / Corporate Communications Master’s program. It helps to have this information handy.
This slide presentation is about the history of the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month campaign and the importance of the campaign in Brazil. The presentation is in portuguese. It was developed as a volunteer work for a Brazilian non-profit organization that cares for needy patients undergoing cancer treatments in the city of Vitória da Conquista – Brazil. To know more about the organization please visit www.casadoamorvdc.com.
This is the story of a brave country girl in Brazil who moved to a big city to chase her dreams.
This fictional speech was to be delivered by the head of the Inter-American Development Bank Cultural Center for the Georgetown MBA students.
The speech was written by Claudia Teixeira under the direction of Professor Mike Long for the Masters Public Relations/Corporate Communication program at Georgetown University.
Welcome and greetings
I want to thank and congratulate Dean David Thomas, and Professors Ricardo and Maximo. It is a great initiative to discuss socially relevant business cases here in the Georgetown McDonough MBA program.
It’s always a pleasure to come back here to Georgetown. It seams like what is said here travels fast around the world. Maybe it’s because of this exciting and eclectic community, or maybe it’s also because of the excellent quality of the online webcast transmission.
You see, I had a dear girlfriend that was a student here at Georgetown. It was a long time ago, but I still have the dearest memories from this campus. I would usually find her reading under that cherry tree next to cemetery and we would talk for hours about our plans to rule the world.
Introducing the topic
Today, I’m here to talk about a social innovation initiative in Haiti.
First I will tell you how fashion designer Donna Karan took an interest for Haitian handicrafts when she visited Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.
Second we will look at how some nonprofit organizations helped the Haitian Handicraft sector gain access to international finance and markets.
Finally, I’ll show you the first successful results of this long-term program.
Case Study developed by Claudia Teixeira under the direction of Professor Fran Bernhards. Master of Professional Studies in Public Relations / Corporate Communication. Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies.
The Livestrong Foundation is a 16-year, highly accomplished American cancer charity organization that has served 2.5 million people and raised $500 million for the cancer fight. The foundation was created by world famous cyclist Lance Armstrong and was deeply united with its founder and spokesman. After Armstrong was condemned for doping, lying, and cheating, the foundation found itself on a mission to survive. The Livestrong Foundation implemented a crisis communication plan to disassociate its image from the image of its founder and reposition its brand on the people and the cause it serves. The full results of the crisis management plan are yet to be evaluated because the foundation is still living this crisis, however it has been able to keep most of its corporate partners and is going to serve more people than ever in 2013.
Keywords: Livestrong Foundation, Nonprofit Organization, Lance Armstrong, Cancer Fight, Crisis Communication Plan