Friday, February 9, 2007

Donation Link Now Available on Website

The networkforgood link is now included on the website. We'll be getting a more prominent location for it (it's currently at the bottom of the homepage) and do a better job explaining the various methods to contribute financially. For a $10 donation (or more) through your credit card, you can see what potential donors will see. It's very well done, and will actually save us a lot of work (they send receipts, allow donors to make gifts in honor of individuals, etc...).

Thursday, February 8, 2007

ESSDC Meeting 2/7/07 7:30 Burns residence

C Kelly, J Burns, K Burns, P Johnson, D Faldet, J Hedstrom, E Lorentzen, M
Jorgensen, Kyrl Henderson (guest)

1. Jack asked for ideas about the marketing plan, leading up to our May
deadline and fundraising goals.
Kyrl said that the marketing should lead up to the fundraising-the
marketing is aimed at a fundraising objective. In our case, the
stages are to get a few big gifts up front, a bigger number of
middle-sized gifts after that, and then a lot of smaller gifts. He
wondered what marketing strategy goes along with that, especially
what we would be doing in March and April to get the word out to the
bigger group of givers. Kyrl is happy to make radio ads to fit a
plan, but he needs the plan.
Jim replied that we've targeted 100 people for calls. Alums of 30s,
40s, 50s from out of town have gotten letters. In-town alums who
are major prospects are on our current list. In-town alums will
also get a later Decorah mailing that may include 2006 school board
voters, a generated list of likely givers, and others.
Kyrl replied that the marketing might fulfill a second objective-not
raising 3.2 million but raising enough public interest and good will
to make the immediate demolition politically difficult.
Kari believes the tide has begun to turn, and that there is less ill
will and hard opposition than in years past. The Carlson gift helped
make that happen, and so did Kyrl's video.
Kyrl said that radio is the first new place to extend our
advertising. And we need to start now, as soon as possible. Then we
might extend to public access television spots. Billboards that
support the emotional investment and encourage people to go to the
website. We may also need more newspaper advertising.
Jim said to do informational work in February, stronger push in
March, and really hard rush in April. Kyrl said that it might work
backwards from that-with double the ads at first that we have a week
or two later.
Kyrl said we need to be focused-how many people to drive to the
website, how many to reinforce direct mail, how to integrate local
direct mail with billboard or television images. The action we want
people to take has to be clear, and clearly reinforced. We need
"crossfire" so people are ready and then reminded when they get the
letter of appeal.
Jim says the new "brand" should be Alice. Kyrl agrees, as did others.
Alice's parents are willing to have her appear in television ads, and
may agree to more. But Kyrl says we must be willing to take "no" for
an answer if the family is worried about overexposure.
Kyrl stressed that in the end it will be the programming that will
carry the day. So too, we must define the issue, not the school
board, so that people take ownership of the issue and feel that it
belongs to the community.

Fritz & Loma visit report

Just wanted to report about my visit with Fritz and Loma Carlson.

I just returned from dropping off 2 copies of the DVD and one support folder. I wanted them to have their own DVD and be able to pass along a complete package to whomever Loma has in mind to see it.

We had a nice conversation. I think I was there for almost an hour. Fritz is of the opinion that we're going to need to find a few "angels". But he stressed the importance of getting an extension of the deadline for demolition. He framed his gift in terms of buying time to find the money necessary to do the whole deal. They both offered their own views of what has transpired, why things are the way they are, and how tough it's going to be to meet our goal, even with the support of people like them.

That being said, they were both very supportive of the effort and encouraged all of us to continue with all of our hard work. They think that the roster has improved with the programs that are currently being considered, and that getting that message out to the community at large is going to be critical to our collective success. Nothing new there, but nice to have the reinforcement.

The primary purpose of this email is to share the feeling of sitting in this huge living room, talking to 2 very successful people, who think we're all doing the work of heaven on earth. Take a moment to congratulate yourself and be proud of what you are doing for your community. What you are doing is making a big difference in Decorah, and we will be successful.

Thank you for everything you do.

From the new kid in town . . . ;>)

Saturday, February 3, 2007

marketing / fundraising plan ?


Could whomever has the marketing / fundraising plan please send it to me?

I would like to be able to plan for creating the pieces that support the plan, especially as it relates to the advertising pieces. And in order to know what to make I need to know what the plan is.

I assume at this point that there is some structure around a fund raising goal, based on getting $X by a certain time, $Y by a second deadline, etc. Jodi indicated in the one meeting I was at that there is a definite method to the madness, and that the "Discovery" event(s) are just one part whereby we ask the biggest fish first, etc. Are there tools planned / expected for attaining specific goals, i.e., brochure(s), direct mail piece(s), email, web site, radio, TV, outdoor, newspaper?

If not, I think it'd be a good idea to talk about those things and get some ideas in place so we can plan to succeed.

FYI, I talked to Mark Stumme and he said that we should have a pile of DVDs (over 100) on Monday night, and the rest of the 275 by Tuesday or Wednesday night. I was thinking it would be a good idea to create a pledge card that fits into the DVD case so that a pledge form accompanies every DVD every time. I know that Jim, et al, are working very hard right now getting the video in front of people and asking for participation in the form of pledges. I just think that it would be nice if even the DVDs that go out "alone" can have a pledge acquiring device built in so that we give everyone every opportunity to give. I don't know specifically what physical form that takes. Just an idea right now . . .

FYI I have also created a blog on that supports our collective efforts. The purpose of the blog is to give us all a place to post information, share ideas, etc. Please let me know what you think and how it can be more useful, etc.



Friday, February 2, 2007

Monday Program committees meeting

There will be a meeting of the program committees this Monday, February 5th at 7:15. It's at 207 Washington St. in Decorah. The old Fancy Pants store, and now Benji Nichols' studio. cya there!


Welcome to the new Decorah Education and Arts Center blog.

This is a place to share news, updates, ideas, complaints, whatever.

I will leave access decisions to Jack. I just work here.

email me with any questions. Please direct technical questions elsewhere. All I know is what I learned signing up for this.