How to reach out to orgs en masse?

post by LindaMartin · 2021-07-27T19:57:02.313Z · EA · GW · 10 comments

This is a question post.

Hi! I landed here a few weeks ago after obsessively reading Less Wrong for several months. I'm a recently retired journalist, content writer, and trainer with 25 years of experience. Since I have more time than money right now, and at 52 and retired I am way beyond the "build career capital" stage, I wanted to donate my skills to effective orgs.

I read in one of the EA basics articles that many orgs are in need of help in the areas of marketing and promotion, so I've been working on redoing some of my old  (live/recorded) content team trainings to genericize them and make them more relevant to this group. In 2020 I trained corporate content teams in (among other topics) PR content, landing pages and emails, organizing the writing process, and how to repurpose content, and I thought these would be good topics to start with. 

All I need to do is remove client names from scripts and worksheets, switch out examples to more relevant ones, revise the slides as needed, and re-narrate the webinars. Each training is about 30 minutes to one hour once I cut out all the student chit-chat, breaks, etc.

My question is, what is the best way to reach out to orgs en masse to offer the trainings? I'd hate to use the time I could be spending revising these courses on locating/contacting all the orgs that could use them. Of course I can reach out to the EA list of top charities individually since there aren't many of them, and I'll post something on LinkedIn, but after that I'm stumped. (I don't have a website; I took it down when I retired. But I could possibly throw a new one up if that would help.)

So: Are there any publications (print or online) you would recommend I send a release to? Any easy-to-access/cheap/free contact lists for charities? My guess is I'd want to contact the communications, marketing, PR, membership, and/or content execs there.

(Tips on revising the courses to be as effective as possible would also be appreciated! I've already finished revising the PR course, and am in the middle of the rest.)

Please forgive the newbie-ness of this post. Thanks for any suggestions you can offer!

Answers

answer by lukefreeman · 2021-07-28T01:01:01.431Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Hi Linda! Great to hear that you're working on this! I work at Giving What We Can and am thinking a lot about outreach at the moment (including things like training writers) and am connected to various organisations in EA.

I'd be more than happy to have a chat about how you can best use your skills and multiply them by training others etc (I think there could be huge value in things like communications masterclasses/fellowships). 

Feel free to email me at luke.freeman@givingwhatwecan.org or book at time to chat using calend.ly/luke-gwwc.

comment by LindaMartin · 2021-07-28T16:38:47.290Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Hi, Luke...that's very interesting to hear! I'll schedule a call to talk about more specifics on my situation and nonprofit trainings. I simplified my situation for the sake of the post, but it may have relevance regarding your suggestions here.

answer by Aaron Gertler · 2021-07-29T01:57:57.013Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

I agree with Kevin's comment about creating a post where you explain your experience, and what you want to help with, in more detail. Lots of charity staffers read this website, and many other readers might know of charities they'd want to share your post with.

People who've done this in the past include Simon Panrucker [EA · GW] and JSWinchell [EA · GW].

comment by LindaMartin · 2021-07-31T00:41:11.225Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Thank you! It was really good to see those posts. I'll get to work drafting something to post in the next week or so. (I don't spend much time at my laptop these days, by design. :)

answer by Kevin Kuruc · 2021-07-28T19:58:08.981Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Hi Linda! I'm excited to see experienced people bringing hard earned career capital (especially in underrepresented fields) here. 

This is a bit of an obvious answer, but my sense is that a ton of people in the community and at the orgs you're hoping to reach read this forum. If you write something up that looks more like a sales pitch than a question-style post, I'd guess that be the easiest place to start. There is even a 'consultancy' tag, and I saw a recent call here [EA · GW] for more EA-consultancies that you could piggy back on.    

Good luck!

comment by LindaMartin · 2021-07-31T00:38:45.833Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Haha, oh yes! I will do that. I didn't feel comfortable at first as I didn't want to come across as spam (even though I'm offering this for free). I'm not interested in consulting per se—I'm building these as DIY courses —but maybe that tag would still work. Thanks!

answer by Madhav Malhotra · 2021-07-28T20:14:25.534Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

The best outreach is warm outreach. At the end of every conversation you have, ask some variant of: "Who should I talk to next?" Even IF the charity you talked to isn't interested in what you have available, they might know someone who is. That starts a pile of exponential growth :-) 

I learned this from The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick.

 

When you do want to do cold-outreach, I'd agree that it does take a lot of time away from the main talent you have. Have you considered getting a volunteer to help with your volunteering? :D Ex: Find a comms/marketing student who's looking for experience and they can search for charity listings online / do the boring emailing. Hopefully, they don't have to do it too long after you get the warm outreach connections :-)

comment by LindaMartin · 2021-07-31T00:37:00.783Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Excellent ideas! I learned to ask "who else should I talk to about this?" as a journalist interviewing experts for articles.

I have not considered a volunteer, but it's worth thinking about. I just want to be careful not to get into a position where this project turns into a work-like situation for me; meaning it may be preferable to do outreach on my own as I have the time rather than having to manage someone else.  But good point that they likely wouldn't have to do it for long, especially as the word starts to spread on its own. So...any takers? :)

Thank you!

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comment by Darius_Meissner · 2021-07-28T08:58:26.747Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Happy to have you here, Linda! It sounds like you have some really important skills to offer and I wish you will find great opportunities to apply them.

Replies from: LindaMartin
comment by LindaMartin · 2021-07-28T16:37:01.360Z · EA(p) · GW(p)

Thank you, Darius! I'm excited to use my skills to give back after a long career.