CFM Clients

Audits Point to Smarter Communications

Are your communications engaging and effective or completely out of order? That's the big question CFM Research Partner Tom Eiland aims to answer with each communications audit he conducts. Eiland was recently commissioned to conduct an audit for the Central Kitsap School District in an effort to sharpen its communication strategies. 

Are your communications engaging and effective or completely out of order? That's the big question CFM Research Partner Tom Eiland aims to answer with each communications audit he conducts. Eiland was recently commissioned to conduct an audit for the Central Kitsap School District in an effort to sharpen its communication strategies. 

Direct communications are the most important avenue to learn about what’s happening in schools. Communications audits can reveal whether your communications strategies and tools are clicking.

“If school districts don’t communicate effectively, others will fill the vacuum of describing what’s happening – and you may not like what they say,” says CFM Research Partner Tom Eiland, who presented the value of communications audits to the annual conference of the Washington Schools Public Relations Association on April 29 in Leavenworth, Wash.

David Beil, communications director for the Central Kitsap School District, provided specific before and after examples of e-letters, social media and the district’s website following a CFM-led communications audit. Beil said post-audit communications relied on stronger imagery, less text, a sharper audience focus and more links. 

The audit was invaluable, he said, in convincing school administrators why changes were needed and that additional resources were warranted.

Audits involve an inventory of print and digital communications, a battery of research and an analysis of actual communications, Eiland explained.

Results from a communications audit can shape a communications plan, clarify who manages communications, prioritize audiences and organize communications tools, he said. “You can make decisions based on data, not hunches,” Eiland indicated. “You can refresh or reboot websites, e-letters and intranets with greater confidence they will deliver more value for the people you need to reach. They also can help earn the resources you need for success." 

Beil and Eiland emphasized communications audits identify how “people communicate and where they get information,” as well as “what information people want and need.”

“This is a disciplined approach to decide what communications tools work or how they can be made to work better,” Eiland said. “It is also a way to measure actual results."

CFM Earns Press Coverage for Local Nonprofit

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CFM helped local nonprofit Central City Concern show off its social entrepreneurship through an article this week in the Portland Business Journal that featured its innovative bed bug resistant bed.

Frustrated with the beds available in the market, CCC invented its own in 2010 to use in its newly built Madrona Studios for its homeless clients. CCC partnered with a Clackamas County manufacturer and used its knowledge from waging a mostly losing battle with bloodsucking parasites to create a durable, safe bed, which it called Central City Bed.

After receiving unsolicited inquiries from other nonprofits, CCC realized it had a going business on its hands. The bed has continued to impress and now is turning a small profit for CCC, which goes to support its job training programs.

Central City Concern also sells Central City Coffee as part of a growing effort to create revenue streams to support its integrated approach to helping homeless people get back on their feet with housing, health care and work.

CFM's Hannah Smith developed the story pitch to the Portland Business Journal emphasizing CCC's social entrepreneurship, contacted the publication and coordinated contacts with key CCC personnel. PBJ took the story and ran with it.

"Central City Bed is a great product," Smith said. "It reflects a smart approach to build awareness, support and revenue for the agency's important work."

The story about the bed appeared online, and a longer version is scheduled to appear in PBJ's weekly print edition.

CFM Helps Del Monte Fresh Produce Support the KGW Live Well Challenge

Fifteen kids dressed in bright red, yellow and green shirts walk and run through Couch Park in Northwest Portland. They’re holding large cutouts of fruit attached to tall sticks.

They’re looking at the playground with a sparkle in their eyes. And they’re gathering to receive directions – not from their parents or their teachers, but from a television producer.

These 15 kids, children and friends of CFM client Del Monte Fresh Produce, are stars in upcoming television spots. The commercials are airing this July as part of the KGW Live Well Challenge, a campaign designed to encourage the public to make healthy lifestyle choices with commercials broadcast by KGW News Channel 8 and information shared online.

The kids get the message. Between takes, they snack on fresh, juicy pineapple and perfectly ripened bananas.

Del Monte’s involvement in the KGW program is an example of how CFM helps clients connect with sponsorships that matter to the community and resonate with clients’ values. “The company’s motto is “eat healthy, live healthy,” and our team was eager to support this effort,” says Del Monte Account Sales Manager Maria Ramirez.

Located in North Portland, Del Monte Fresh Produce is supporting one of KGW’s special campaigns for the first time this year. “We’ve worked with KGW on successful campaigns and knew its team would be a great partner again. It’s a perfect fit,” says CFM Account Executive Suzie Giacomelli.

Del Monte Fresh Produce provides a diverse suite of goods and services such as sales of whole fruit and vegetables, repacked whole fruit and vegetables, fresh cut products as well as delivery and back haul services.

Watch for the spots airing this July. In the meantime, check out photos from the shoot.