On a tight school PR budget? Skip the costly ads and billboards. Invest in this instead.– SCN Encourager

Building up and nurturing your various school communities is worth every penny.

Especially now.

groupMaximize every “kumbaya moment” in your district and keep bringing your people together.

I wasn’t just promoting the upcoming Lunchinar on customer service when I included “LIVE EVENTS” in Tuesday’s list of 4 trending school PR strategies.

Bringing people together will pay off every time.

Of course, you must be sincere about it.

And that’s the hardest part to carry out with 100% fidelity.

Sometimes unrealistic people and/or unrealistic demands make it difficult.

But like comedian George Burns said more than 50 years ago,”Sincerity – if you can fake that, you’ve got it made!”

The meaning of community has expanded in 2016 and acquired greater importance.

PenquinsSchool community no longer means just being agreeable, yakking it up with booster group parents, and selling stuff to raise funds.

People can share school news without us.

Nearly everyone is going online in some manner to voice their opinions today.

So P2P is where the action’s at.

And here is where a targeted effort in school community-building strategies can the difference.

We all know that every individual possesses a strong inner desire for personal recognition; to feel known, to feel safe, to feel valued, and to feel a sense of belonging.

This is nothing new.

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 8.27.53 PMBut what is new is the rapid rise in trust people now have in their informal P2P (Peer-to-Peer) channels over any of the others.

For those of us who create school messages for a living, that’s a sad fact.

P2P communications are often perceived as more honest and reliable.

In contrast, O2P (Organization-to-Person) communications are often viewed as self-serving and unreliable.

SO… consistently nurturing your various school communities day-in and day-out is about the only way you can count on having a solid base of positive school ambassadors always ready to jump into those online “peer review” threads and the on-going ebb and flow of conversations in social media.

You can’t ignitet a school PR asset of this magnitude on the speedy-kwik.

It’s organic.

You need to invest the time and plant the seeds early on.

Now, I’ll confess, investing time and planting seeds (et al) all looks like a lot of extra work.

So, maybe I’ll first try to just create school communications that actually are self-serving and unreliable.

If that’s how P2P networks are going to perceive our work anyway, why not give it to them from the get-go?

I mean, how hard can it be to be “self-serving” and “unreliable?”

Oh wait, I already know.

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