Deep Dive Breakout 2

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

2:00pm-3:00pm

We have new mediums, new technologies, and new ways to tell stories and share perspectives. Learn from a panel of those who do it best and can help you develop a modern storybanking and story-sharing plan to engage and promote your stakeholder voices.

NOTES

  • Why did you choose to come to this session?
    • Sometimes we’re the only voice that our patients have for their stories → want to make sure we’re getting it right
    • Want to learn new and cutting-edge methods for story-banking
    • We have good stories, but need help with banking and sharing them
    • We deal with obscure issues, so being able to convey this to an average person who could understand the issue and its impact is challenging
    • We have enthusiastic and passionate advocates, but they often don’t follow through → how do we capitalize upon people’s interests by sharing a quick moment
  • Audience Question: For something like a testimonial like the example in the slide, did you reach out to Justine and ask for a paragraph? What was the pitch?
    • Mary-Lynn: For this example, we were gearing up for our Lobby Day, and told them that they need to bring students. We also created a virtual Lobby Day, and pulled snippets from blogs that students did, as well as outreach to ambassadors for the program. At first, we did have to target specific people and get them to share their story, and once they did, other people started to speak up.
  • You have to train the frontline people, to get those who are interacting directly with members how to recognize a good story, because you never know where they’ll be collected. 
  • Partnering with other organizations to find and leverage stories is essential
  • Mary-Lynn: one of the ways we’ve partnered with student organizations is by having their members share stories. It benefits us because they’re participating in our campaign. We worked with Omega Beta Iota, and they were having trouble having students apply to be members. Their director did a blog with us, and added that they would consider people more strongly if they were involved with advocacy → it spiked applications and encouraged others to do similar partnerships
  • Audience Question: Are you packaging and sharing the final story, or is each organization getting more of the raw ingredients?
    • Jesse: We will package and share it through our social media, but it often starts raw → you cultivate that relationship and then see what you get out of it.
  • Storing your stories
    • Mary-Lynn: One thing we learned by accident is that Beekeeper recommended WordPress for our blog, and it turns out that they’re organized very nicely and in chronological order. Without having the support internally for an advocacy platform, we’ve been using Microsoft Sharepoint. What I found is that there’s things called MetaData features → you don’t even have to worry about creating a folder filing system, and it gives you better control over how you sort the stories. It’s like its own little internal Google, and if you don’t currently have an advocacy platform it could be one thing to consider.
    • Julia: We do a lot with Facebook Live, because it’s cheap and easy to use. You can make playlists with different series names, (ex. Advocacy Series), which makes it easier for people to find without paying for any kind of cloud storage or anything like that.
    • Jesse: We use an Excel spreadsheet for all of our social media posts with a calendar for the next month, and keeping track of everything with a link included. 
  • Audience Question: Does every story go in that bank or just those that have been vetted? What is the process for vetting?
    • Mary-Lynn: We only put them in when they’re final, which has adopted from Sharepoint in general. We have a general email address where we collect any stories from those who have reached out, and then transfer them over when they’re final. In terms of the vetting, it’s a little bit work-intensive. One of our managers works hand-in-hand with our students and will set up a template for it. If someone reaches out and says why they’re interested, she’ll do a call with them and help them to shape their story, which would then become a draft. We also do check their social media and make sure there’s nothing inappropriate or anything like that. 
    • Julia: If you can work with internal and conference teams, they see everything and will tell you if someone is abrasive or not a good speaker → breaking down those internal silos and working with other teams that may have more touchpoints on a daily basis
    • Jesse: We’re working on getting a file sharing system so our employees can upload videos, so our employees can collect them on the go and share/vet them with clips from more candid videos. 
  • Have you ever had an incident where someone fell through the gaps in your vetting process?
    • Julia: We accidentally gave someone a platform in front of 5,000 members who actually had just spoken at a conference about something that went against our mission → if we had checked with someone who had been at that conference, it could have been avoided, so it was a good learning opportunity to do your research
  • Audience Question: How are you getting the photos that go along with the stories?
    • Mary-Lynn: We just embed it into the editorial process with the quotes and testimonials, we ask for a headshot or candid photo and then tag it so that the search will make both files come up
    • Jesse: We always try to have some kind of media, whether it’s a photo, video, or graphic → using Canva to create graphics
  • Collecting stories over the phone → playing around with different platform using a form that could be used as a template for quickly collecting these stories
    • Microsoft Teams has a Teams chat, could be a way for those on the phone taking notes to have file attachments and searchable content
  • Maintaining a high-quality archive → how do you make sure content stays fresh but also evergreen?
    • Important to spend a lot of time on Instagram and YouTube and see the way that other people are delivering content → you don’t have to completely re-invent the wheel. 
    • If the information is still relevant and still gets at your core message, it doesn’t matter if it’s older content
    • If you can’t show the whole video anymore if its outdated, you can pull out key quotes that are still relevant and won’t have to throw the whole thing away
    • If the issue has passed but the story itself is still powerful, use it as an example of training others how to share powerful stories or for what advocacy is
    • Word of caution: it’s possible that the person is no longer allied with you (due to personal experience), so the opt-in for use of a story sometimes expires
  • Audience Question: how do you handle releases?
    • Use of a standard photo release form
    • If we are reusing stuff that’s older, we will reach out to the person and make sure they’re still interested in their content being used
    • Expiration can be one year from the date that they signed → you’re covered for the rest of the year
  • Matching stories with specific channels for impact
    • We try to keep in mind when collecting the story or testimonial, how it can be used for multiple channels. Since it’s text, it can be paired with various other forms of media to be customized.
    • Video often leads to the highest engagement
    • Instagram is highly visual and 70% of hashtags are branded → you can use stories to do polls, drive traffic to the main page, increase engagement etc. 
    • Created a Facebook page for employee advocacy, Twitter is used for policy messaging with elected officials
    • Use of newsletters → used to have an advocacy specific newsletter but now is integrated in order to reduce the number of emails sent out and to show that advocacy is part of everyday services
  • Any examples of offline advocacy?
    • We’ve collected patient stories with a picture and handout and given them directly to policymakers
    • Use of mapping → many big organizations have an interactive map on their site, can see stories on demand
    • Pro-bono photographer to take photographs of “the face of hunger” and posted near lawmakers offices
    • Paper form with *insert picture here* of a loved one affected by the cause, can write their story in the margins and leave it behind in person
    • Tabletop coffee table book for each legislator
  • The ethics of storytelling 
    • Use of standard disclaimer language that’s all inclusive of the different ways that the content could be used
    • We try to only make editorial stylistic changes → you have to find the balance between shaping the story and helping them tell their own story. You have to resist controlling the message
    • Always have someone sign a release form, even if you don’t think you need one
    • Humans of New York style “generic image” of someone’s hands or feet without having to show their face