Images from the Backstage Pass, hosted by FPRA Orlando Area Chapter on Thursday, January 28, 2016 at Goodwill Industries of Central Florida. Photo Credit: Chris Gent, APR, CPRC
Chapter Rewind | By: Gabriel Soltren
January Backstage Pass, Goodwill Industries of Central Florida
January’s Backstage Pass event took place at Goodwill Industries of Central Florida. William Oakley, CEO/President of Goodwill Industries, presented a brief history of the organization. Goodwill Industries was started by a Methodist Minister in Boston in 1902. Today, the nonprofit has 165 independent organizations.
Goodwill Industries is one of the first “social entrepreneur organizations,” Oakley said. In Central Florida, Goodwill operates 27 retail stores. They provide job training for people with difficulty getting jobs. For example, they help people that have been released from jail or have disabilities to get jobs. Oakley explained that they went from doing little marketing to aggressively marketing their services.
FPRA member Judith Pariseau, Vice President of Public Relations, spoke about the Goodwill Industries public relations campaign. Goodwill Industries developed a public relations and advertising campaign to increase visibility and to increase donations. The campaign included pre and post perception surveys, TV spots, radio spots, billboards, and print ads.
Goodwill Industries hired a public relations firm, Linda Costa Communications Group, to assist with media buys. They reduced expenses by using TV commercials produced by a partner organization in another state. After testing the TV spots with local audiences, a commercial featuring a sister that Goodwill Industries helped to find a job for her disabled brother succeeded. Click below to see the “Jim and Shannon” commercial.
The results of the public relations campaign included more than 60 media placements. The number of donors increased by 16 percent.
The tour of Goodwill Industries included a backstage look at their operation. Pariseau showed members the book donation operation. Donated books are sorted and the best books are cleaned and given to school children. Other books are either sold online or they are recycled. The organization receives many donations of clothes. They improved their service by providing newer stores and convenient drive through donations. With the new service, donors would not have to get out of their cars to make a donation.