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The Writers’ Desk
News & Notes from the Casey Communications Team

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Leveraging a Focused Message

St. Joseph's Academy - Saint Louis, MissouriSt. Joseph’s Academy, a private, all girls high school in St. Louis, called on Casey Communications for marketing and communications support aimed at bolstering the school’s image in the community and the size of incoming freshman classes. Through key message development, brochure creation, a targeted media relations effort and video production, Casey Communications helped the school far exceed application and enrollment goals. Applications rose 17.5 percent – a goal set at 5 percent – and yielded a 6.9 increase in enrollment for the class of 2013.

Goals achievement was reinforced with news coverage that emphasized themes identified for recruitment messages. On April 8, 2009, when nearly 20 percent of the student body fulfilled a pledge to donate their hair to the national charity, Locks of Love, Casey team member Diane Poelker was on site for quick-turn video production and media coordination with two local television stations. Footage aired in five local news casts and was seen by an estimated 500,000 viewers. Additionally, Poelker produced a video of the event, circulated it to local reporters and ultimately secured a blog posting on the STLtoday education blog, The Grade. Posting the video on YouTube boosted mission-focused awareness with more than 2,100 views to date.

St. Joseph's Academy YouTube

Click here (or on the image above) to see the video.

Try Some Sleep for Success
by Marie A. Casey

sleeping for successGrowing up as the fourth of eight children, I was the oldest of “the little kids” and despised required afternoon naps – sensing that I was missing fun and adventure with my two older sisters and only brother.  Sleep wasn’t a priority in my young mind!

So I was fascinated to read in The Scientist recently that our activities while awake cause a disorganized multiplication of the synapses in our brain that eventually taxes our ability to think and remember.  The study, inspired by Chiara Cirelli and Giulio Tononi, reported that during sleep, our brains identify the strongest synapses for reinforcement and eliminate the weaker ones.  By doing this, our brains drop the unnecessary connections and sharpen the important ones.

This could explain why we can awaken with solutions to issues that perplexed us the day before and why it’s good to “sleep on” major issues and challenges.  Here’s wishing you happy sleep, knowing you’ll awaken smarter and more creative than you were the day before!

Connecting Past, People & Purpose

Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS)More than 40 marketing professionals discovered new ways to promote their businesses at Heritage Marketing – Using History to Differentiate Your Firm, a presentation by Marie Casey at the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) – Missouri Valley Regional Conference on April 3, 2009.

Casey worked with participants in an interactive session to discover the potential power of an organization’s history to its marketing efforts, whether aimed at growing the business, attracting great people or enhancing reputation. Many companies and organizations possess historic resources that can be mined for the insights and clarity they bring to current decision-making, marketing, culture-sharing and corporate planning.

For a quarter-century, Casey has worked with more than 100 businesses to tell the stories of the past to inform and inspire the future.

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Other Cool Things We’re Doing

State of the Media 2009

State of the Media 2009

Broad cultural shifts are seriously impacting newsrooms and how news is disseminated, according to the 2009 State of the Media report compiled annually by the Pew Research Center. One obvious culprit is the slumping economy, but other trends show an increased focus on dialogue rather than mass communication.

The growing popularity of news on-demand, whether found online or delivered to a SmartPhone, has created a new breed of media consumer. More and more, readers seek only what they want, when they want it. And, with the rise of blogs and social media venues, such as YouTube and Twitter, reporting news is increasingly participatory. Journalistic power is shifting from institutions to individual journalists and the general public.

With so much free content online, traditional outlets (newspapers, magazines, network television and radio) are being hit by declining audiences – further fueling sharp declines in ad revenue which has paid news salaries and production costs in the past. Related online ad sales are failing to generate sufficient profits needed to support the media business operations.

Notable changes across media outlets and news distribution:

  • 5,900 jobs were cut from newspaper newsrooms in 2008 and cuts have continued into 2009.
  • Nearly 40 percent of Americans visit online news sites more than three times a week.
  • Only 52 percent of people regularly watch nightly newscasts on network television, down 12 percent from one decade ago.
  • Cable television audiences have grown, fueled in part by 2008 election coverage.
  • Mobile technology skyrocketed with 40 million Americans actively using SmartPhones to access news.

Want to know more?  Read the entire report.

Casey Communications

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