December     2011
Good Buzz
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors


ASHI National Audio News Release Airing in December

SANDY BOURSEAU

Keep your ears open the week of December 11. ASHI's 60-second message (audio news release – ANR) will air nationally within the Viewpoints program (MediaTracks). This allows for distribution of ASHI-controlled content that is not subject to online editing or alteration.

"Viewpoints" is a weekly, half-hour, nationally syndicated program reporting on important news issues including consumerism. The program, which saw its national broadcast premiere in June 2000, is written and produced by a group of award-winning broadcast journalists with extensive experience in nationally syndicated radio programming.

With an average of 420 affiliate stations, the ASHI program will air on "Viewpoints" once in each market for one week, delivering approximately 850 national airings and a listenership of 2.9 million. The program currently is airing in 20 of the top 25 markets and in 41 of the top 50, delivering a reach that covers 86 percent of the U.S. (reaching the local markets across the country where ASHI members conduct their business).

More benefits of the program:

  • "Viewpoints" stations include affiliates of CBS Radio Network, ABC/Citadel Media, Westwood One, Premiere Radio Networks, WOR Radio Network, UnitedStations Radio Network, Triton Global and Talk Radio Network

  • Guaranteed Placement on Broadcast stations on iTunes

  • Online placements through Internet streaming to mobile phones through Stitcher, a tool that allows audio content to be easily aggregated, organized and shared on mobile devices

  • Tracking and verification provided through signed affidavits from stations
And this is just the beginning.  The radio spots are a small piece of a public relations program designed to educate the public about the value of a home inspection and the benefits of choosing an ASHI inspector.

Why PR: Why not advertising or marketing?

Throughout the years, ASHI leaders continued to choose public relations over advertising or marketing programs for a number of reasons, for example:
  • Public relations cost less while offering the potential for a wider, deeper and longer exposure than either advertising or marketing.

  • Public relations programs produce editorial content, which consumers perceive as more credible than marketing material or advertisements.

  • ASHI has the perfect message for a successful public relations program — consumer protection, safety and high standards.

 
Watch for regular reports on where and how the ASHI message is reaching consumers and the realty professionals.

Promoting a reputation established by members

Years ago, the Internet provided a boon to ASHI's public relations program. With the addition of the "Find an Inspector" search function on ASHI.org, PR resources could be focused on pushing consumers, realty professionals and others interested in inspections to the website, where they learn about inspections and inspectors and search for and contact ASHI members.

Social Media

More recently, ASHI added social media to the mix.

Having established an active presence on three platforms — Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn — ASHI is watching emerging platforms and will follow the numbers where they guide us. If a new platform has the number of users to warrant participation, ASHI will be there. Meanwhile, we invite all members to participate and nurture the current activity.

What's good for ASHI can be good for you. See the recommended websites for learning how to use Twitter and Facebook to promote your business and to support ASHI.

Reaching out to all media

  • ASHI is collecting editorial calendars for key real estate and trade publications (Web, electronic and print) to identify potential opportunities to offer expert resources and to use for a media tour.

  • The same market will receive an e-blast to position ASHI as an expert resource for any stories publications plan for the upcoming year and will respond to media requests for information about inspections. This is ongoing throughout the year.

COMING UP

January, and twice more

News Releases

  • ASHI will distribute three news releases, beginning with an announcement of ASHI's new officers, in January

  • The second release will announce the results of a Harris Interactive survey. (Watch for details)

  • The final release topic will be determined closer to the date, to ensure it is timely and of interest to key media contacts.


Week of March 19

New York Media Tour

Gibbs & Soell will assist the ASHI president in a media tour to present the results of the Harris Interactive survey and other relevant ASHI topics to editors through face-to-face interviews.

In the Spring

Paid-Placement (MAT) Article

In May or June, ASHI will develop a paid-placement, or MAT, article about a current topic in the industry, choosing a timely topic closer to the date of the article. The list of placements for this year's MAT article was 17 pages long, listing 692 online and 90 print placements, most in the mid- to small markets where many ASHI members live and work.

Keep an ear and an eye peeled. Every day, ASHI's public relations program is promoting the value of a home inspection and the benefits of choosing an ASHI member.

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Tweet & Retweet


Members are promoting themselves and ASHI by retweeting ASHI's tweets. Visit ASHI Twitter by using the handy button on the ASHI home page, then join in. Let ASHI help you build your own social media presence.

  • The US CPSC @OnSafety completed a study on problem drywall. Read more about the findings in the ASHI Reporter. http://ow.ly/7jixw

  • Learn more about #home inspections and uncover some common findings with ASHI's Virtual Home Inspection Tour! http://ow.ly/6DmKb

  • Are you a member of the Twitterverse? If you tweet, be sure to follow the official ASHI Twitter handle. http://fb.me/1nx3MchgI

  • For a chance to #win 2 tickets to Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesen West, register for #InspectionWorld online before 11/5. http://ow.ly/7eo6U

  • @ashi_inspection Check out ACI & 3rd party certification. Big difference between 3rd party & self certification. http://fb.me/1nx3MchgI

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How To Use Social Media


Welmoed Sisson recommends the following websites for getting up to speed on social media.
 
michaelhyatt.com/the-beginners-guide-to-twitter.html

mashable.com/guidebook/twitter/

www.webdesignerdepot.com/2009/03/the-ultimate-guide-for-everything-twitter
(has a pop-up sales message; just close it)
 
Here is one on creating Facebook pages:

www.squidoo.com/facebookpage
 

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