One of the great things about being President is the opportunity to recognize our members for all of their hard work and accomplishments, both inside and outside of Toastmasters.
I was asked on Tuesday to send some information to another Toastmasters Club on our Public Relations program at Summit Toastmasters. After typing for an hour, it really hit home how much we have accomplished just on the Public Relations side since July 2010.
Here is a brief summary:
- Toastmasters Membership Building Contests: Our public relations campaign started with Dan Chase wanting to do the Smedley Contest for one of his Leadership projects. We started small with the posters, then one person volunteered to do one part of the web stuff, then another member volunteered to do another, and so on.
- Blogging: Our past-president, Ryan Hawkins set up our WordPress account back in February. After Ryan moved to Colorado Springs, Dan Chase (our TM computer guru) helped me get posting capabilities on the site. It has been a great experience to learn how to register our blog on the search engines, link to other sources of information, and send out information to our facebook page and other Social Networking accounts. One of the next goals is to get more members posting now that we have a framework started.
- Facebook: This leads to our Summit County Toastmasters Facebook page. Our VP of Public Relations, Amy Nakos, set up the page so that we can post pictures, videos, blog posts and other information. We have several community members linked to the site who are interested in learning more about Toastmasters.
- Freetoasthost Website: Our VP of Education, Pat Moore, is updating our freetoasthost site with all sorts of new features. The site has a section for members to post information, plus another section for members to sign up for meeting roles. Pat also maintains a club calendar on the site and a listing of our members. We may have to do a club lesson on how to use the site. (Hmmm…speech topic for somebody.)
- Toastmasters International: Toastmasters International and some of the other TM clubs have a variety of posters that we customize with our meeting times and contact information that can be hung at libraries, colleges, offices, etc.
- Newspaper: Our VP of Public Relations, Amy Nakos, works with contacts from our local newspaper, The Summit Daily News, to get articles into the paper. Our VP of Education, Pat Moore, also makes sure that we are listed in the free community events section the week of our meetings. Some newspapers also list this on their website community calendars.
- Just being Passionate: Being passionate while discussing the different opportunities for members and the community is important in all Public Relations. Several of our members are working to improve their skills to speak professionally, so aligning these multiple goals is important. Many community groups are excited when learning that Toastmasters is a resource for their own meetings.
As you can see, Public Relations is a group effort. Good luck with your program and have some fun!