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Lessons Learned from Franklin Matters

Lessons Learned from Franklin Matters



three principles and a recommendation scheduled for presentation to the Franklin Town Council, Weds, Jan 15, 2014.

three principles and a recommendation scheduled for presentation to the Franklin Town Council, Weds, Jan 15, 2014.



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  • Thank you for the opportunity to spend a few minutes tonight <br /> Your Dec workshop raised so many items around communications <br /> One of my goals is to share in ways that matter <br /> As the ‘self appointed’ Community Information Director <br /> This is an opportunity too good to pass <br />
  • While I could talk for hours, I am mindful of your time and of those watching remotely <br /> I have a short agenda to provide some lessons learned <br /> For those who may not be aware of who I am, I’ll cover that briefly <br /> then get into the three principles I have learned <br /> I’ll provide a recommendation to summarize my lessons learned <br /> I have one slide at the end for Q&A but I am comfortable with interruptions along the way <br /> Interaction and collaboration will make this better <br /> These slides were updated since they were included in the published agenda but you should have the updated copy <br /> I have also posted these slides to the webpage so others can follow along <br />
  • I am currently working full time at RBS Citizens Bank in East Providence, RI <br /> Sought them out while I was looking because of their focus on customer, colleague and community <br /> Good alignment with one the principles I follow and you’ll hear about tonight <br /> I do not represent Citizens Bank in what I do here, <br /> I’ll also not spend anytime about what we are doing with the Franklin Food Pantry, that respectfully deserves its own time <br /> The business I will focus on tonight is what I do for my fellow citizens and taxpayers of Franklin, MA <br /> Sharing information on the business of Franklin to enable good voter and taxpayer decisions <br />
  • I started writing online in 2005, started following some meetings in 2006 <br /> Concerned with the multiple hour meeting and reading the paper the next day to find maybe a portion of the meeting covered, <br /> PodCamp Boston was held in August of 2006 and I had my ‘ah ha’ moment <br /> I wrote extensively during 2007 and the only successful operational override to date on my personal blog <br /> Writing so much there that some of my regular readers were asking questions <br /> I create Franklin matters as a separate site in Nov 2007 and started that in earnest after the Nov election <br /> For simplicity sake, I am showing the numbers from 2008 through Dec 2013 <br />
  • The overall content comes from other than myself <br /> The careful readers will recognize that while a good portion is original <br /> I do share other notifications of events for Franklin groups, organizations and businesses <br /> I also share the applicable articles from the MDN and other items of interest to Franklin <br />
  • With 33,000 + residents; 20,000 voters; my target is to reach 10,000 subscribers <br /> Yes, I have a long way to go <br /> The blue bars show the page views, a page view is counted when you click on a link to read that post <br /> The blue line indicates the net growth in my email subscribers year by year <br /> I show these two together deliberately <br /> While the page reads is important, the subscriber growth is more so <br />
  • Which brings me to the first principle <br /> And let me raise two questions <br />
  • The answer to those questions will lead us to use one or more of the tools available <br /> I don’t show Google+ but over the past month, the activity there has been surprising me with some growth I had not expected <br /> Google+ has an advantage in coming late to the game, able to learn from Facebook’s mistakes <br /> Facebook however is still the big gorilla in number of users <br />
  • The second principle <br />
  • On a cold day, close your eyes and think back to summer time <br /> Maybe mid-august, corn is high, country road <br /> Hand painted sign, crudely printed, fresh vegetables for sale <br /> You can bet the dew was still on them when they got picked that morning <br /> Same day, same road, a mile or so further down passed the vegetable stand <br /> Another hand painted sign, this time free flying lessons <br /> Now it may be that the farm hand who keeps the tractors and equipment running so well has maintained the plane <br /> But would you really take the chance with that ‘content in context’ <br />
  • Most communities work this way <br /> The stronger the community, the more there is agreement on the scope of the content <br /> Life is not always so cleanly cut, black/white, there are many grey areas <br />
  • A good case in point, this story is still developing <br /> You may recall that the fallen hero signs were announced in a ceremony in 2012 <br /> I obtained the documents and photos from Rose Turco and posted the World War II series during August <br /> As a native RI the celebration of Victory Day (VJ day) is still held there. <br /> 23 posts, one per fallen hero <br /> Including Timothy J Hayes info shown here <br />
  • In the meantime, an American living and teaching in Canada went on a trip with other Canadian teachers <br /> He visited the US cemeteries in Normandy carrying one small flag to find and mark a grave there, he did so <br /> Returned home to Google the name of the fallen who’s grave he marked with a flag <br /> Found the link to Timothy Hayes <br /> Email correspondence underway <br /> He drove to Franklin to visit the street corner before Christmas <br /> I am delinquent in following up on the family contacts I received from Rose <br /> If any relatives of Timothy J Hayes are watching, please be aware I am looking to reach out to share this story <br /> The gentleman plans to return to Normandy next year <br /> MDN article on legislators use of social media tools “it has an exponential positive effect” <br /> http://www.franklinmatters.org/2014/01/it-has-exponential-positive-effect.html <br />
  • And thereby the circles of communication can blend together, overlap from one to another <br />
  • Finally to close <br /> You have a lock on the content around Franklin <br /> It needs to be more shareable, more searchable, more useful <br /> You have multiple audiences but there are multiple platforms to reach those where they are (location, location, location) <br /> You can’t afford to bring on more teachers, more police, Fire and DPW workers where we need them <br /> You can afford to enable concern citizens to handle the communication effort <br /> I won’t lead it, I am not looking to lead it, I have enough on my plate already <br /> I’ll help <br />
  • Only three copies of the book for you, you can read and share <br /> It is well written and an easy read time wise, under five hours to listen to it as I was driving over the holidays <br />
  • Thank you! <br /> I do appreciate how much time and effort you put into this work on the Council <br />

Lessons Learned from Franklin Matters Lessons Learned from Franklin Matters Presentation Transcript

  • Lessons Learned: 3 Principles and a Recommendation Steve Sherlock January 15, 2014
  • Agenda • Who is that guy? • Location, location, location • Content in context • Three “C”s • Recommendation • Q&A FranklinMatters.org/ Page 2
  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/stephensherlock http://www.franklinmatters.org/p/why-franklin-matters.html The ideas expressed here are my own FranklinMatters.org/ Page 3
  • Setting the stage - p1 Franklin Matters activity over 6 years (2008 through 2013) Meetings reported on YouTube videos Audio podcasts Franklin area photos Posts to webpage FranklinMatters.org/ 263 32 110 >2400 9080 Page 4
  • Setting the stage - p2 FranklinMatters.org/ Page 5
  • Setting the stage - p3 FranklinMatters.org/ Page 6
  • Location, location, location • Who do you want to reach? • Where do they gather? FranklinMatters.org/ Page 7
  • FranklinMatters.org/ Page 8
  • “Content in context” FranklinMatters.org/ Page 9
  • The story is from Tom Asacker A Clear Eye for Branding: Straight Talk on Today's Most Powerful Business Concept FranklinMatters.org/ Page 10
  • Community Conversation Content FranklinMatters.org/ Page 11
  • http://www.franklinmatters.org/2013/08/fallen-hero-sergeant-timothy-jhayes-us.html FranklinMatters.org/ Page 12
  • FranklinMatters.org/ Page 13
  • Circles of communication Photo credit -> http://www.hansgrohe.com/en/4851.htm/ FranklinMatters.org/ Page 14
  • Recommendation • You have commanding Content • Form a “Communications Committee” • Build a Franklin Community around improved communications by involving the people for whom it matters most FranklinMatters.org/ Page 15
  • For additional info • Sherlock’s “Basic Blogging” series – http://steves2cents.blogspot.com/2010/10/bas ic-blogging-or-blogging-100101102.html • PodCamp Western MA – April 19, Holyoke Community College – https://www.facebook.com/events/266444840 173001/ • Jay Baer’s book “Youtility” – http://www.youtilitybook.com/ FranklinMatters.org/ Page 16
  • Q&A