Morning Workshops

Power Up Your Communications Plan
Led by Thom Clark, Community Media Workshop 

This workshop will walk you through the development of a communications plan using an exercise to establish goals, target audiences, messages that move people to action and the tools to achieve your communications goals.

Supercharge Your Social Media Strategy
Led by Adriana Diaz, Community Media Workshop

You’re using social media tools like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to tell your organization’s story. Now learn how to be strategic about your social media work. This intermediate social media training will allow attendees to review their social media work and create a plan of action moving forward. Attendees will engage in online communications planning during the training and create a social media policy for their organizations. The trainer will also discuss the importance of content strategy and measuring success.

Propel Your Video Production: Video Producing 101
Led by Marissa Wasseluk, Community Media Workshop

Learn to create visual stories for your organization, even if you only have minimal time and a minuscule budget. Get an informational introduction to video planning, shooting, and post-production.

Wonder Web! Packing a Punch with WordPress
Led by Kathleen Pequeño, communications strategist

Are you managing your organization’s website? This session will simplify navigation and help you strategize to create content. Advance your mission and build your organization’s web presence.


Laura Washington Interviews Amisha Patel

Chicago Sun-Times columnist and WLS-TV political analyst Laura Washington will conduct the midday Making Media Connections keynote conversation with Grassroots Collaborative executive Director Amisha Patel. She will share stories and techniques about how organizing tactics are changing in 21st century urban neighborhoods. How are digital tools and social media blending with traditional door-to-door, one-on-one organizing? What communications strategies are campaigns utilizing in a shifting media landscape where there are fewer reporters covering our stories?


Afternoon Breakouts

Creating Stories from Under Reported Communities

Within our shifting media landscape, more and more non-traditional journalists are reporting the news. Learn how organizations are using their expertise to inform stories from under-reported communities as representatives from The Chicago Community Trust’s Local Reporting Initiative discuss their projects. Panelists: Adriana Cardona-Maguigad (The Gate);  Joel Handley (In These Times); Jill Wohl (Health and Disabilities Advocates); Moderator: Thom Clark

Modern Mobilizing: Activism in the Digital Age 

Digi-wha? Digital organizing is modern campaigning and we’re here to help you improve your digital work in activism and organizing. Learn how digital tools, like social media, can help you not just say something, but be heard.  Panelists: Martin Macias, Jr. (Media activist/Youth Organizer at Chicago Fair Trade); Eric Téllez (Grassroots Collaborative); Charlene Carruthers (National Peoples Action) Moderator: Tracy Van Slyke (co-author of The Echo Chamber)

Digging for Data to Bolster Your Story

Do you use data and statistics to show the impact your organization makes in our community? Finding and using data to narrate your organization’s story doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it may seem. We’ll introduce you to methods that will help you collect useful documents and find meaning in your research. Then learn how Chicago journalists and data crunchers use data sets and public records to perform investigative journalism and how you can apply these same techniques in your own storytelling. Panelists: Maria Zamudio (Chicago Reporter); Derek Eder (Open City); Kyla Williams (Smart Chicago Collaborative);  Moderator: Susy Schultz (The Daily Journal/Columbia College Chicago)

Staying in Control of Your Brand

Has your organization recently faced a major change (like the swift exit of of an executive director; a major name change; or if you feel the media has misrepresented your organization)?  Were you equipped to stay in control of what messages, be it internal or external, your brand communicated? Are you equipped to handle potential conflict and still maintain your brand’s reputation? Discover how you can stay in control of your brand, messaging, and social media when faced with major changes or conflict. Panelists: Emily Blum (Heartland Alliance); Emily Lonigro (LimeRed Studio); Ethan Spotts (Active Transportation Alliance); Moderator: Jill O’Mahony Stewart (DePaul University)

Who Do You Trust? Why News Matters

How do we vet the information we get from the web? As bloggers and tweeters edge up on traditional media outlets in gaining news seekers’ eyes and ears, how can nonprofit communicators gain audience and credibility in their storytelling Join the conversation among grantees of the McCormick Foundation’s Why News Matters initiative. Panelists: Ulises Zatarain (Pilsen Portal); Jeff McCarter (Free Spirit Media) Moderator: Tony Streit (Education Development Center, Inc.)

Oh BAMA! How Your Campaign Can Benefit from What We Learned By the Obama Tech Team 

The Obama for America team redefined how technology is used to run a successful campaign. Learn what technology is right for you and your organization, and how it can help you tell your stories and maximize volunteer and donor engagement. Panelists: Chris Gansen (Dashboard Tech Lead); Scott VanDenPlas (DevOps Lead); Ryan Kolak (Narwhal Integration Tech Lead); Nick Leeper (Finance Tech Lead;) and Jason Kuenesh (UI/UX Lead); Moderator: Kathleen Pequeño

Mobile Storytelling: Basics for Community Engagement through Mobile Media

Find out how the mobile landscape has grown and how you can use mobile devices to tell your organization’s story. Rethink how existing tools can augment your voice. Panelists: Jane Hanna (Field Museum); Jeremy Gilbert (Medill, Northwestern University); Amy Guth (Chicago Tribune); Moderator: Charlie Meyerson 

State of Community Journalism

Research from our New News Report 2012 shows the rapid growth in online news sites. As traditional media shrinks and online news sites and blogs grow, find out the many different ways to get your local news. Discover how online news is changing the face of the media and how your organization does media relations. Panelists: Andrew Huff (Gapers Block); Aricka Flowers (Progress Illinois); Shamus Toomey (DNAinfo); Moderator: Suzanne McBride (Columbia College Chicago)


One Response

  1. Modern Mobilizing: Activism in the Digital Age - NP Communicator

    […] will moderate an afternoon panel June 4, 2013 at Making Media Connections on activism in the Digital Age, featuring activists who use digital […]

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