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Things to do before the PSA hits the air

In order for the "Monuments" PSA initiative to be most effective, we want to help you prepare for this opportunity. The following are guidelines intended to help NAMI affiliate leaders effectively participate in the "Monuments" initiative. Please note that a small amount of planning, preparation and a commitment to follow through are keys to success.

CHECK LIST RECOMMENDATIONS:

Make sure your NAMI Affiliate contact information is correct.

  • Visit the NAMI website at www.nami.org/local and make sure that your contact information is correct. This is the single most critical step to a successful outreach effort as NAMI receives over 26,000 unique visitors a day to our website. Additionally, the PSAs refer viewers to the website and the HelpLine, both of which rely on the accuracy of the posted information. If you need to make changes, please do so through the web membership system, or contact memberservice@nami.org for assistance.

Be prepared to share the services you offer, i.e. education programs, support groups, etc.

  • One of our goals with the "Monuments" initiative is to promote NAMI"s services to both its members and the community. Be ready to give detailed information about these services to anyone inquiring. Remember, the goal is to spread the word about NAMI, so when more positive, accurate information is available we are one step further along in our mission and one step closer in reaching our goal. YOU are the source to the community and to the media.

Ensure that your NAMI Affiliate is welcoming to all families AND individuals

  • NAMI is an organization for individuals and families affected by mental illness. We are NAMI. We are here to provide support. People who are part of the "lived experience", families, individuals and friends, need to know that there is hope and that your NAMI Affiliate is a resource for them.

Ensure that your website is active and updated.

  • The Internet provides a wealth of information to all kinds of people on all different subjects. After seeing the "Monuments" PSA, many people will search for information concerning NAMI and may land at your site via the NAMI Affiliate finder through NAMI.org. NAMI receives thousands of unique visitors each month through this avenue. This is why it is vital to keep your website active and up-to-date. For assistance with this task, contact the NAMI national web team via webmaster@nami.org.

Ensure your NAMI Affiliate contact (via phone) is available, and ensure a backup as necessary.

  • Be on alert at all times. People will come to you for information about NAMI. You are the direct link between NAMI and your local community. A good way to share the leadership of this role is to secure an alternate, someone who can receive calls when you are away or when you need extra assistance.

Review the distribution list of stations who have been sent the PSA, as well as those who have already aired it, and prepare for your outreach.

  • Use any and all relationships with radio and TV stations that you may have. You will also want to reach out to other stations. A list is critical and should include the mailing address, email and phone number of the program manager and/or PSA Director. Additionally, you will use this information when you follow up, after the PSA has been mailed.

Take advantage of this opportunity to engage the media further.

  • The "Monuments" PSA will draw the attention from the media and help bring NAMI"s message forward. This is a good time to contact the public service directors (or the appropriate person) at the stations who will be receiving the PSA package via the mail. Your phone call will not only help encourage them to air the PSA, but will also help build a bridge with this media for all of your NAMI Affiliate efforts.
  • Be assertive. Schedule face-to-face meetings when possible, or make contact by phone, mail or email. Use the sample script templates that have been provided for you. Sometimes it may be difficult to get in touch with the media so try all of these methods. Be patient and polite"but be persistent.
  • Be prepared. Plan the key points you want to make when contacting the station. Anticipate and prepare answers to questions that may arise.
  • Reiterate that you are a resource for them. You provide more detailed information that they may not know. This will help establish a two-way relationship with them. Not only are they helping you, but you are helping them as well.
  • The media needs to put a local face on the issues we are dealing with at a national level. You are the experts. Tell your story. Make the issues relevant to the community around you. When the issues become more relevant on a personal level, they have a greater impact.

Resources for NAMI State Organization and NAMI Affiliate Leaders


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