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Water Efficiency 2-for-1 Special: Water Utility Communications


Course 1 -  Avoiding Public Outrage: Communicating More with Less 

Doing the little things…does matter. Whether changing the wording on your utility billing statement or engaging on social media, it’s the simple, inexpensive changes that can boost customer experience and trust in your leadership.

Join industry expert and AWWA author, Melanie Goetz for the first session of our Water Communications Master Class Series, to explore how utilities on a tight budget can make small (and cheap) changes to their messaging, marketing, and billing to improve customer experience and public support. From tweaking communications one detail at a time, to leveraging websites, crowdsourcing, and surveys, we’ll investigate in-depth how to manage public outreach and build trust to avoid crisis and maintain public perception.

In this online training webinar, we’ll take a look at the tools and techniques you can implement in-house that cost virtually nothing, but can make a huge difference. We’ll start with a look at routine customer communications (e.g., billing statements) and how small changes in format, font, wording, tone, and across cultural groups, can improve understanding and support. We’ll explore customer surveys and Goetz will explain how you can use these to gather information, convey your message, and build your brand. We’ll also investigate in-depth how you can leverage websites and crowdsourcing and, when managed correctly, how they can function as a virtual part-time employee. Additionally, Goetz will outline field-tested communications’ best practices designed to educate your customers and cultivate trust with the public. Throughout the webinar, Goetz will weave in real-world examples and case studies of where water communications went right…and wrong.

Learning Objectives 
Attendees can expect the discussion and education of the following learning objectives:

  • Review and identify improvements to your billing statement and communication tools.
  • Learn how to administer customer surveys to cultivate positive and impactful messaging.
  • Discover best practices for communicating problems before revealing solutions.
  • Investigate how to leverage websites and crowdsourcing to build public engagement and opinion.
  • Gain the tools to educate and build trust with the public.

Course 2 - Surviving a Media Crisis

At some point we all find ourselves in the hot seat. And if you're a public figure, that hot seat is likely in front of a media firing squad. Are you prepared to answer the tough questions? Are you ready for the media's tricks? Do you have a plan in hand to manage your reputation? You should.

Join returning industry expert Melanie Goetz for her tips and tricks to survive any media crisis, including how to: assess the damage; create a communications and response plan; address, manage, AND leverage the press; and know when it's time for full damage control.

In this online training webinar, we'll start by identifying the five different types of media crises (from witch hunts to emergencies), how to determine the level of your crisis, and what options you have once you're thrust in the spotlight. We'll address the importance of a communications and response plan and how to craft one with effective soundbites that answer the tough questions and emphasize your key messaging points. Goetz will also present an in-depth look at the media and its tricks, including the 8 toughest questions reporters ask and how you can spot (and spin) their setup questions so you control what airs and prints. Additionally, we'll discuss how to recognize upfront if the media is your friend (distributing information in emergencies) or foe (escalating the issue), how to best leverage a friendly media, and how to effectively mitigate a hostile one. Finally, Goetz will outline when to know it's time for damage control, the essentials of damage control, and how to take responsibility and show empathy WITHOUT losing trust in your leadership.

Throughout this webinar we'll take a look at real-world video footage and examples from the field of what to do and not to do when it comes to the media. Attendees will walk away with a better understanding of the media and a game plan to survive (and thrive in) any media crisis.

Learning Objectives:
Webcast attendees can expect the discussion and education of the following learning objectives.

  • Learn how to effectively leverage the media during a crisis to your advantage.
  • Learn why a communication plan is essential and how to develop an effective one.
  • Understand the five different types of media crises and what they mean for your company.
  • Know the eight toughest questions reporters ask and how to bridge them to your key messaging.
  • Understand the power of soundbites and how to craft them to work for you.
  • Learn when you need to apologize and the essentials for effective damage control.

* Presentations are scheduled for approximately one hour with a 1520 minute question and answer session to follow. Presentation may exceed scheduled time. 
* Each state and certification agency has different requirements; it is your responsibility to know what they are. Note that 1 PDH = 0.1 CEU.
* Purchase of this special allows you access to the presentations for 6 months from the order date.

On-Demand Webcasts
Sessions: 3 H 0 M
Lectures: 2
Credits: 2 PDH / 0.2 CEU

Specials > Specials ($99.00)


Special Group Pricing Available


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