"Promoting the future of IoD Jersey" (Jersey Evening Post - dated 3 June 2020)

In the first of a regular series, IoD Jersey will be sharing insights into the work of its specialist committees, the successes and challenges, and the expertise that goes into ensuring the organisation serves and reflects its members and community. This week it’s the turn of the PR Sub Committee.

Collaboration Is Key

When Lisa Springate came on board as the new Chair for IoD Jersey, she was keen to give it a much-needed refresh. The brand has been around for over a hundred years and its format needed modernisation to ensure that IoD Jersey was adding value to members and acting as a tool to encourage new members to join.

Natasha Egré, Chair of the PR Sub Committee, put together a team who could help to move the IoD Jersey brand forward. Jo Ferbrache and Yvonne Corbin at local marketing agency, Betley Whitehorne Image (BWI), had been working with Kevin Keen at Leadership Jersey and there was a buzz about how these events were being marketed; Natasha approached them to see if they could help to generate the same energy around IoD Jersey.

It was clear after the first meeting together that there was a lot of work to do and that this dynamic team was up for the challenge. Their breadth of experience meant they were able to come up with a plan that ensured IoD Jersey speaks inclusively to a broader range of sectors and a more diverse audience.

Natasha’s background includes working as a business journalist and magazine editor, before moving into PR and marketing and specialising in event led PR, media relations, contentious issues and political lobbying. Jo has worked both in the agency and client side of PR, with a particular focus on the development and protection of brands; while Yvonne has extensive events management and marketing and social media strategy experience.

They asked themselves the basic, fundamental questions as a starting point…what are the benefits of being a member locally? What differentiates IoD Jersey from other business groups on the Island? Where can business leaders find this information?

Get Social

The PR Committee worked to produce a social media strategy, building a positive brand image, growing the audience following across all social channels and driving new membership leads. It was important to tell the story, from when Lisa came on board to date, showing the gradual change in approach and bringing people along on the journey. Social media was used as a powerful and positive change agent for IoD Jersey, engaging with the local business community.

Over the last twelve months, IoD Jersey has seen a huge growth on all three of their social media channels. Between the platforms, there has been an influx of 1,584 new subscribers, with LinkedIn achieving a massive 1060 new followers alone. This shows that users are enjoying the frequent, on brand, informative posts. Facebook also saw engagement levels of almost 9,000 last year and Twitter has a huge number of impressions, almost 260,000 in a year, without any advertising.

Get Online

Social media was driving interest and leads, but there wasn’t anywhere to drive people to. It was time to give the IoD Jersey website some much needed TLC.

Initially imagery was selected to reflect the diverse audience, which IoD Jersey wanted to appeal to. This imagery needed to be professional, modern and vibrant. The ethos of the IoD is all about connections, people and their professional journeys; it was important to show the faces behind IoD Jersey and the faces of its members, telling their unique and inspirational stories.

Colour was an important element of the design, and the full spectrum of IoD guideline colours were used. It was also critically important to the team that the site navigation and user experience was simple and engaging. The site works well across all devices and screen sizes and uses a state-of-the-art content management system allowing it to grow in the future, while also making it easy for Branch Officer, Zoë Wauton to update.

· Events: The team has also ensured that you will never miss an IoD event again. All information is automatically populated on the website from Eventbrite. The site also reminds people of the benefits that they could enjoy by becoming a member.

· The Team: It was important to connect the IoD Jersey team with its membership, and so all the committees are introduced on the site, with information about who chairs each one.

· The members: Showcasing the talents of members is equally important and an interview section was added. The first Q & A interview was with Tom Hacquoil, CEO of PinPoint and winner of last year’s Start up Company Award in the IoD Awards in both Jersey and the UK. An interview with Sue Fox, CEO of HSBC, Channel Islands and IOM has also recently been shared. This new content will keep the website up to date, local and relevant into the future.

· Professional development: The site is an important resource for those who want to take advantage of the valuable career-boosting educational courses offered by the IoD. The opportunities are now clearly signposted for members.

· Committee updates: The next step, will be to include a handy ‘Resources’ area, sharing useful committee documents, of which there are many. The committees have been very busy! There will also be a link through to the members’ only area, with information specifically for members.

Success: The website has seen a huge 1.5k visitors since the official launch back in March 2020, 500 of those people have visited in the last month alone. The team celebrated when IoD Pall Mall complimented the new website, saying that it was ‘best in class.’

Lots more to do:

While Covid-19 may have disrupted the events and courses schedule for 2020, the PR committee has still had plenty of work. Lisa and the committee chairs have been working with all stakeholders: government, industry, media and members, to try to alleviate the difficult circumstances we have all found ourselves in. The relaunch of the IoD Jersey newsletter had to be postponed, but it will be heading to member inboxes soon, and in the meantime, the PR Committee has been communicating to both members and the public, the work of all of those who so passionately make up the committees and membership of IoD Jersey.

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