Ag Communication Web Services

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Another Successful Communication Camp Completed

Last week, NDSU’s Agriculture Communication staff hosted the second-ever Communication Camp (CC) for Extension Service staff. We jammed in a whole lot of work in three days, but came out with some great tangibles; most notably, some new videos posted to NDSU Extension Service’s YouTube Channel

The purpose of Communication Camp is to work as a team to gain  skills, better understand communication and education in the digital age, and produce text, Working Together Teamwork Puzzle Conceptimages and video that can be used in educational programs. Like the first CC in June, participants represented a variety of programs. This time: the Parent Resource Center (PRC), Food & Nutrition, and Financial Management/Aging.

The agenda was tight but we had to fit it all in, in order to meet the goals of producing:

·  1-2 Web content items

·  a draft news release for a topic or event

·  several images for use in online and print content

·  a short video on YouTube

Each team had a liaison that participated in the last CC, and helped with the current group.  I was the liaison for one of the PRC’s. I think my group would agree the hardest task at camp was one of the first things we were asked to do: nail down a few key messages. We could not move forward with writing a news release, picking keywords or creating a video until they found something that was actionable and educational, and not a marketing message. It was like putting a puzzle together - you can't complete it without using every single piece. After a lot of discussion and brainstorming, my group’s key message was to show ways to avoid bedtime meltdowns with kids.

My group worked well together and shared best practices.  Through those conversations their messaging became relevant and usable. Through learning and hard work, they came up with a great final product. Check out the video here.

Communication Camp is intense but we have received positive feedback from our first two groups. Supervisors choose who attends the camp, so now you know what it’s all about if you get tapped on the shoulder to attend. If you can’t make the camp, check out all the resources here. From start (defining your key message) to finish (uploading a video to YouTube) you can promote your message.

If you have any questions about Communication Camp or any of the resources listed in the agenda, please contact me.

Sonja Fuchs
Web Technology Specialist, Ag Communication
North Dakota State University

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