Digital and traditional communications and public relations

Our overarching goal is to significantly expand civic engagement, media outreach and other communications in support of our partner organizations and progressive issues in Michigan. We accomplish this through the use of earned media, online tools, and trainings to expand communications capacity within partner organizations.

Our core work focuses on messaging, earned media, Web-based communications, and comprehensive trainings:

  • Messaging and Media Support – With research-based messaging we generate press on targeted issues of importance at the state and local level. Combined with the creative use of new media, including YouTube, Twitter and Facebook, we change the public dialogue. Progress Michigan connects  credible spokespeople with the appropriate reporter in a timely fashion. We help experts distill research into easy talking points for the public and press to consume.
  • Web and Social Media Support – Our Director of Digital Media and Webmaster assists groups in developing and deploying best practices in the design and use of Web sites and social media, with an emphasis on effectively integrating these online tools into other media and communications activities.
  • Rapid Media Response – Few non-profits have the ability or the time to work effectively with the media. Using the infrastructure we have built, we work with our non-profit clients to respond rapidly to breaking news and make sure that the press has their side of the story.
  • Building Communications Capacity – Our Communications and Capacity Building program provides specialized trainings on communications planning, message development, media events, interviewing, media list management, press release construction, story pitching and social media tactics and strategy.

When working with partner organizations we can provide:

  • Communications Capacity Building trainings tailored to the needs of partner organizations.
  • Rapid response to breaking stories to ensure the message is reported as part of the news cycle and that positive stories are moved and developed as second-day stories or beyond.
  • TV-centric media events, using strong visuals and strategically placed locations.
  • Press releases, press advisories, talking points and Q & A documents tailored to specific media events and developing stories as well as assist partner organizations in the release of reports and with other media activities.
  • Pitch stories to reporters utilizing our comprehensive and continually updated media and blogger lists and by leveraging our relationships with reporters, editors and assignment editors.
  • Develop messaging for earned media, Web content, online actions and other media.
  • Coordinate and provide “Stay on Message” prep practice sessions and other trainings as needed for partners and messengers doing media.
  • Conduct background briefings for reporters and bloggers.
  • Produce video and use YouTube and other online tools to drive the narrative around issues and leverage traditional earned media.
  • Provide expert advice and support for best practices in the development and use of organizational Web sites.