Inside This Issue:
Positive employee morale leads to customer satisfaction. When employees understand their role in the overall strategy and success of the cable company, they perform better at their jobs and they stay in those jobs longer. This, in turn, can increase customer satisfaction as some of the greatest ambassadors a cable company has are its employees. How can cable communicators craft effective internal and employee communications campaigns that inform all employees about business goals, inspire them to improve the customer experience, and connect frontline employees to senior management and vice versa?
Four leading cable communicators will share their best practices in internal communications. Some of their secrets to success have included the use of social media, effectively communicating brand/reputation transitions and other change management efforts, and crafting email that cuts through the clutter. Christine McCafferty, director, communications for Comcast, Wanita Niehaus, director of marketing, corporate communications for Scripps Networks, Monique Peyser, director, internal communications, Time Warner Cable—Carolina Region, and Susan Warner, senior director, public affairs, Time Warner Cable will be on hand to advise you on how to run effective internal communications campaigns.
ACC's next online chat will be accessible to all on its Web site: www.cablecommunicators.org on August 13, 2 PM EDT. If you have a question that you would like to ask the experts participating but will not be able to join the live chat, please email Michelle Butler your question. ACC will post a transcript of the chat in the members-only section of its Web site.
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Ovation TV has partnered with local cable operators and cultural organizations to provide free admission to museums across the nation. The partnership will provide select periods of free admission this summer to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the Brooklyn Museum in New York City, the Dallas Art Museum, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
The current affiliate relations campaign builds on Ovation’s established relationships with local cultural organizations—relationships that have been a hallmark of the network’s outreach efforts. Shaping local campaigns to fit the needs of both the operator and partnering organization provides a co-marketing platform that benefits all involved. While cultural organizations gain national exposure on Ovation, operators receive access to the organization’s membership database and products—a great source of contact for potential viewers. The network receives the same exposure to members as the operator, but also fulfills its mission to support the efforts of local art communities. “With a passion category like art and culture, you really have to be [local],” Gaynor Strachan-Chung, senior vice president of marketing for Ovation, said of the network’s efforts. “Culture is what defines a community.”
When embarking on a community relations campaign dealing with a genre specific subject, Strachan-Chung advises “mak[ing] it relevant for all constituents in the community.” The network has made their services both relevant and accessible to consumers by providing programming on local cultural events on local video on demand. They also foster the next generation of artists by supporting arts education institutions in the communities. Additionally, Ovation has taken their local approach online with their social networking space. The site allows members to post pictures, audio, and video of their art and connect with fellow artists in their area and across the nation.
For more information on free museum days and Ovation TV, visit their Web site at www.ovationtv.com.
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Peggy Ballard, senior director, service provider marketing, for Cisco Systems Inc. and ACC President announced her retirement after 30 years in technology communications this week. Ballard has made an impact on the industry throughout her career by investing her expertise in ACC, as well as NCTA, CTAM, and WICT. She has been honored by Multichannel News as a 2009 “Wonder Woman” and was named one of the top 50 women in cable in 2006 by CableFAX/CableWorld.
Ballard will be pursuing her “encore career” after September 24th and will be greatly missed by many in the cable industry.
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Billboards, commercials, newspapers, e-mail, Twitter, blogs, TV: we’re bombarded with thousands of messages everyday. With so many messages delivered in so many diverse ways how do you make your message stick? In ACC’s latest brief “Developing Your Message and Its Supporting Points,” Tripp Frohlichstein, president of Media Masters Training, explains how using a message map can be the key to effectively reaching your audience. With useful examples, clear diagrams, and easy to follow instruction, Frolichstein breaks down the keys to building strong supporting points and developing an effective message delivery plan.
Designed for cable communicators in public relations, marketing, communications, public affairs, government relations, executive office and other staff positions, this ACC brief provides an overview with specific examples of key messaging techniques cable communicators should understand and use to recognize what resonates with every specific audience with whom they communicate.
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Comcast and One Economy, a non-profit organization devoted to teaching digital literacy to low-income individuals, have partnered to bring the Comcast Digital Connectors program to 22 locations across the nation. The program teaches teens and young adults about broadband technologies and how to put that knowledge to work in a variety of community service activities.
“Our work with One Economy will build a diverse cadre of young people with technical skills in digital media who want to help people in their communities understand how their lives can be improved by adopting broadband technologies,” Jaye Linen, senior manager, public relations for Comcast Eastern Division, said.
The partners have banded together with community-based organizations in each location to teach digital literacy skills to people, ages 14-21, from diverse and low-income backgrounds. Over the course of a year, the program takes place in after-school and summer training sessions. Comcast employees also have a chance to get involved and serve as mentors during the program. Participants work in teams two to three times a week and volunteer using their new digital literacy in their communities. Teams have already tackled projects such as cleaning desktops and refurnishing computer equipment for the elderly and creating Web sites for community organizations.
Comcast Digital Connectors builds on a similar, pre-existing program created by One Economy. “The best part [of partnering with One Economy] is that we’re able to leverage the great work they’ve done in other communities and recreate those successes throughout Comcast’s footprint,” Linnen said. “This program is a great addition to the work we’ve been doing to not only educate consumers about the benefits of digital cable and promote digital awareness and adoption, but it also compliments the work we’ve done to engage, inform and empower youth and families in underserved communities.” For more information, visit Comcast's Web site and One Economy.
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ACC is taking its popular panel topic “Web 2.0 Today & Its Impact on the Cable Industry” on the road to the 2009 Mid-America Cable Show in Overland Park, Kansas! Join us September 23 at 10:00 AM as NCTA’s Paul Rodriguez and Michael Turk explain the evolving world of Web 2.0 and how you can use it to communicate the industry’s message.
Are blogs boring? Is Secondlife a ghost town? Can a 140-character message on Twitter really make a difference? Is Facebook better than MySpace? Has anyone besides Wikipedia been successful with wikis? What is the state of Web 2.0 today, and how can cable communicators use it to tell the industry’s story?
NCTA’s Paul Rodriguez and Michael Turk launched CableTechTalk.com, cable’s blog on technology. During the panel Web 2.0 Today, these two innovators in the world of Web 2.0 will overview the social media landscape and explore ways that you can advance the cable industry online.
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The Ohio Cable Telecommunications Association (OCTA)’s Ohio Cable Foundation for Education and Technology (OCFET) has provided ten scholarships to TECHie Camp, a technology summer camp for elementary and middle school children. The camp is run by TECH CORPS Ohio, a non-profit organization committed to enhancing K-12 education through use of technology. TECH CORPS identified students in need of scholarships by using school lunch funding guidelines and OCFET provided two scholarships for each of the five camp sessions.
“When OCFET learned that TECH CORPS Ohio was developing a technology summer camp for elementary and middle school children, we saw it as an opportunity to build technology awareness and skills among some of our area’s neediest students who receive support through TECH Corps’ work with school districts that have limited resources,” Maryann Kafer, director of public relations for OCTA, said. “The series of week-long technology day camps allow these kids to participate in hands-on interactive activities focused on robotics, programming and gaming. The students will increase their understanding and knowledge of how to use technology to expand their own learning; acquire new technology skills critical to their success in the classroom and beyond, and increase their familiarity with professions where technology know-how is core.”
OCTA has a history of partnering with state and non-profit education technology centers to build awareness of cable resources and support education, technology, and citizenship. For more information, contact Maryann Kafer at email@example.com.
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Being a part of cable communication’s premiere professional development event just got easier. The program outline, registration and hotel information for FORUM 2009 are now available online. Join your colleagues for educational sessions and networking opportunities to further your career, October 26-28. Simply visit the Cable Connection registration site for ACC events. Once there, you can register for FORUM, other associated events, and book your hotel room in just a few easy steps.
Denver has affordable hotel rates ranging from $195 at the Denver Marriot up to $349 at the Ritz Carlton with many options in between. The ACC preferred hotels are the Marriot, Brown Palace ($210) and Ritz Carlton. Additionally, airline discounts are available on United, American, and Continental. Use the following codes while booking online or through your preferred travel agent to receive up to 15% off applicable classes of service for tickets purchased prior to the meeting on United and Continental or 5% off American tickets:
Registration is $800 before September 23 for all three days. Beacon-Awards-ceremony-only tickets are priced at $150. This year, FORUM opens with the Beacon Awards on Monday evening, October 26th, and continues on Tuesday and Wednesday with a full range of educational sessions. For more information, visit http://www.cablecommunicators.org/forum.php.
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Time Warner Cable Central Texas’ Movies in Your Park outdoor film event went green this summer with Project Planet nights. “Americans seem to be looking for ways to help the environment,” Angela Williams, Media Relations Manager for TWC Central Texas, said. “You see more shoppers using canvas or reusable bags rather than plastic bags, more focus on energy and water conservation...and generally more heightened awareness about environmental issues. Project Planet nights were an opportunity for us to partner with the cities and educate community members on how they can 'go green'. rdquo;
Through a partnership between TWC and Sustainable Waves, the movies were provided with 100 percent solar power. Sustainable Waves is a company that specializes in sustainable energy solutions for the entertainment industry. The company powers the events with solar charged batteries—eliminating the need to use electricity off the grid.
TWC also left their viewers with more than just an evening of environmentally-friendly entertainment. Community organizations took the opportunity to educate citizens about ways to incorporate environmentally friendly practices into their every day life. TWC worked with local partners to recruit environment protection awareness organizations to provide trivia questions and practical tips to the audience before each screening. The operator also partnered with TexasIsHot, an organization that promotes energy efficiency in the state, to award one lucky attendee with an HD Energy Star TV. For more information, contact Angela Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Women in Cable Telecommunications (WICT), in partnership with The Cable Center, will present Cable Boot Camp and Beyond on September 22-23, 2009, at The Cable Center in Denver, Colo. This two-day conference will examine the business models, regulatory landscape, financial metrics and technology products that define and drive the cable telecommunications industry and is designed for professionals with less than three years experience in cable. Taught by industry veterans Dick Clark, Carol Vernon, Bill Dorman of The Cable Center, and Dr. Ron Rizzuto, senior fellow at The Cable Center and University of Denver professor, Cable Boot Camp and Beyond is priced at $795. For more information, visit www.CableBootCampAndBeyond.com.
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mtvU and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs announced the four recipients of the Fulbright-mtvU fellowships for 2009. Established two years ago to promote music as a means of global understanding, the fellowships provide students with the opportunity to conduct research abroad on topics in international music culture for one year. Entrants were judged by a panel that included musicians from bands Death Cab for Cutie, My Chemical Romance, Vampire Weekend, and Santigold.
Winners this year will travel to Malawi, Brazil, Morocco, and India, respectively, and share their experiences via blog, podcast, and video on mtvU’s main Web site, the Fulbright-mtvU site, and on air. Recipient Andrew Magill, of University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill, will record the stories of families and individuals impacted by the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Malawi and work with a prominent local artist to create a concept album to benefit AIDS social service networks. Michael Silvers of UCLA will study the relationship between local cultural music in Brazil and climate. In Morocco, Rod Solaimani, of Georgetown University, will participate in the Afro-Arab-Gnawa-Western musical exchange. He will research the impact of U.S.-Moroccan musical partnerships to develop curriculum for local high schools and organize a student concert. Tina Wadhwa, of Columbia University, will travel to India to create a documentary on the influence of Bollywood on the lives of underprivileged children in Mumbai.
The Fulbright Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, is the U.S. government’s flagship international exchange program and is supported by the people of the United States and partner countries around the world. Since 1946, it has provided more than 294,000 grants to participants from over 155 countries. The more than 1,500 Fulbright U.S. Student Program grants offered annually provide an opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, to exchange ideas and contribute to finding solution to shared international concerns. For more information, visit http://fulbright.mtvu.com/.
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Join and support ACC by becoming a 2009 corporate member. For more information on how your organization can join ACC as a corporate member, please contact Steve Jones at email@example.com or 202-222-2373. For membership details, go to http://www.cablecommunicators.org/cmember.php.
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