Essays

Workshop: Better Word of Mouth Marketing

Tuesday, March 2, 2021
10:00 a.m – 11:30 a.m. (PT)

Even in the era of social media, the most effective marketing strategy is word of mouth. Regardless of your role – board, staff, or volunteer – you can represent your organization more effectively and encourage positive buzz. Join the brilliant Andy Robinson and me to learn how to engage potential supporters, develop compelling messages, and deliver them effectively. 

Hosted by The Nonprofit Association of Oregon

Presenters
Andy Robinson, Principal, Andy Robinson Consulting
Brandon Hayes, Founder, Bold Bison Communications and Consulting

Lights! Camera! Action!

Video is an absolutely vital tool for involving volunteers, donors and neighbors in the work of land conservation. Unfortunately, many land trusts and conservation organizations approach video as something that they need to spend a lot of money on, hiring professionals rather than doing it themselves. In an effort to show that making a video is fun, easy and inexpensive, I premiered a workshop at Rally 2017 in which I didn’t just talk about the importance of video, but instead worked with attendees to create a brief video— brainstorming messaging points, shooting interviews and editing footage—right there in the conference room in a 90-minute hands-on experience.

We had so much fun that the Land Trust Alliance (LTA) brought the workshop back for every Rally since, including virtual Rally 2020. The workshop has been so popular, in fact, that LTA asked me to compile my notes from the seminar for a story in Saving Land, their print publication. I’m happy to share that story with you.

Lights! Camera! Action! Let’s Make a Video, Saving Land, Winter 2021 (p. 32)

Photo: Noah Powell

Conservation Must Meet This Moment

In May, I had the pleasure of presenting a workshop at River Network’s Virtual River Rally, and in September had a chance to “sit down” with River Network continue to the conversation.

We had a very illuminating conversation during which I expanded further upon my view that the conservation sector must find ways to be true leaders in a movement for social change.

“I think we are well past the point that any organization can simply decide to make equity, diversity and inclusion a priority in their next strategic plan over some number of years. That moment for inaction through slow action is gone, and we need to act decisively.”

For far too long – and despite overwhelming public support – the conservation movement has surrendered the rhetorical ground in the public sphere and retreated from focusing on the changes needed on our planet in favor of projects that are fundable.

I firmly believe it is nonsensical to try and separate the work we do to care for our planet from the true and everyday experience of how we live on this planet. I founded Bold Bison not just to start conversations like these, but also to help the conservation sector rise to this moment, so I am thrilled to share this interview with River Network.

Read the Full Interview

Earth Day R.I.P.

Today is the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, an event that first took place some eight-and-a-half years before I was born. Sitting here on the forty-second day sheltering-in-place in Chicago from COVID-19 and watching the Earth Day messages from conservation and environmental organizations large and small fill my email inbox and my social media streams, each fighting with the other for my click and my credit card number, I think, “To hell with Earth Day.” Earth Day was an effective tool of and for its time. But it is not for our time.

Let this 50th Earth Day be the last. We need something new.

Continue reading “Earth Day R.I.P.”