Situation

The International Civil Rights Center & Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina, engaged RLF to craft an integrated communications campaign around the grand opening of the Museum. The goal was to raise the Museum’s visibility surrounding its opening date and the 50th anniversary of the Greensboro sit-ins. We had four objectives: 1) Generate national awareness for the Museum, (2) Execute a historic grand opening, (3) Expand the Museum’s online reach and (4) Launch and support the grassroots fundraising arm of the Museum.

Strategy

RLF commenced national media outreach targeting all segments of mainstream media leading up to the grand opening. We conducted media tours in New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., and had more than 600 phone calls with journalists. In addition, we launched a public service announcement campaign spanning print, outdoor and broadcast, and created television spots featuring prominent civil rights activists. An overhaul of the Museum’s website provided new, engaging design and content to encourage ongoing dialogue and education. A social media campaign encompassing Facebook, Twitter and YouTube ultimately drove traffic to the Museum’s website and spurred conversation.

Results

In six months, the campaign generated nearly 192 million media impressions worth $3.4 million, increased website traffic by 276 percent, sold out Museum tours for the first several months and doubled the fundraising goal. Media coverage included: USA Today, The New York Times, the Associated Press, CNN, People, The Wall Street Journal, Southern Living, The New Yorker, CBS’s “Evening News,” NBC’s “Nightly News,” ABC’s “World News Tonight” and numerous other local, national and international outlets.