Creating a Media Strategy
In 2017, the Port of San Francisco hired the Civic Edge team to develop and deploy a communications strategy aimed at educating San Francisco residents about the need to strengthen the Embarcadero Seawall. One big chapter of our playbook was media and public relations.
How do you raise awareness about a nearly-invisible piece of 100-year old infrastructure that no one has ever heard of? More to the point, how do you move people from not knowing the Seawall exists to knowing we need to act now – and invest big – in efforts to strengthen it?
Civic Edge created opportunities for “free” media coverage and let some of the region’s – and the nation’s – most trusted messengers explain that San Francisco’s Embarcadero Seawall is critical to the survival of the City. We mounted a major earned media campaign for the Port, including penning Op Eds, developing collateral to educate reporters, and creating a suite of photos and video b-roll for use in video and print. We hosted media events and conducted outreach to respected journalists writing for publications as small and focused as hyperlocal neighborhood blogs to outlets as broad and far-reaching as The New York Times. Thanks to more than 50 stories in the local, regional, and national publications that San Francisco residents trust most, the once relatively unknown piece of infrastructure now has name-recognition across the city. San Franciscans not only know what the Embarcadero Seawall is, they know that it needs strengthening to withstand the next major earthquake.