All colleges have a department responsible for handling communications, marketing, and public relations. Their names may vary, but their missions are the same: to get publicity for the college.
The work your chapter does and the awards your members receive make great news for your college. These departments want to know what students are doing and achieving so they can promote them to the surrounding community. It makes the college look good, and it gives your chapter more visibility and exposure to a wider audience.
Connecting with your college’s PR department is easy.
1. Set an in-person meeting with the director of the department if possible to introduce yourself, your chapter, and Phi Theta Kappa.
2. See if you can get a specific point person or contact within the department to communicate with directly moving forward. Schedule a meeting with that person.
3. Ask how the department likes to receive news and story ideas. Do they want a pre-written press release, or is a brief, detailed email good enough?
4. Share a schedule or calendar of your chapter’s upcoming events.
5. Create and share a brief fact sheet outlining your Honors in Action and/or College Project to illustrate what you are working on.
6. Create and share a contact list of chapter members that the PR department can refer to when they need a general quote from a student. Include brief identifiers, such as their major, their age, whether they’re part-time or full-time, etc.
7. Give them your chapter’s social media handles and ask them to like and follow your pages.
8. Share photos from your chapter’s events and trips. Send these either as individual attachments or in a link to a folder or site online — do not put them into a Word document. Include the names of people in the photos and information about the photo.
Ultimately, you want to do whatever you can to make your media contact’s job as easy as possible, so they’re more likely to use what you send them.
- Provide all the relevant information to them, but be brief.
- Clearly list a name and contact info for someone in your chapter in case they need to follow up.
- Be sure your photos are good quality and high resolution.
Find more tips for marketing your chapter in the Five Star Advisor Plan.