Case Study: MWCA Say Yes to Saying No
Monument Women’s Creative Alliance (MWCA), a local nonprofit organization empowering women in creative professions to exchange ideas and inspiration within a private online forum, learning workshops, social events, and community impact opportunities. The board and select members plan and implement events each year to fulfill its mission: To support women creatives by cultivating a community that enables connection, inspiration, and education. Co-founders Rachel McFadden and Hazel Geary contacted Polished Nichols Public Relations & Marketing to provide event planning, implementation, and promotion services for the Fall Wellness Event.
MWCA was seeking volunteers to oversee event management for their upcoming events. Above all, they needed to work with an experienced team to run the show from start to finish, and didn’t have a budget for event planning outsource. After an introductory meeting about MWCA with Rachel and Hazel, Natalie and Nicole decided to offer pro bono services for MWCA.
In addition, with Covid surging again at the time of planning, the team needed to decide if the event would be an in-person or virtual event as that would determine the plans.
Polished Nichols managed a committee of five volunteers, drafted and implemented a thorough strategic event plan, updated detail/task documents daily/weekly, and managed team calls. Specifically, details included:
Deciding on a Wellness topic that would be attractive to a large target audience.
-Selected topic: Say Yes to Saying No
-Conducted research on topic and gathered background information to assist with speaker selection
Planning and finalizing event details
-Date: The most attractive day of the week for the target audience
-Time: The best time of day for individuals to spend time at or on an online event
-Length of event: The appropriate amount of time for the event knowing that people will use their lunch, free, or dinner time to attend
-Cost: The fee associated with the event – free or donation of $15 to pay for the giveaways and speaker gifts
-Registration: Eventbrite platform
-Partnership: The right organization with which to partner. We selected Women in Design in Central Virginia.
-Researched potential speakers with unique topics to share (motivational speakers/business owner, artist, medical therapist)
-Discussed speaker leads with the committee
-Narrowed down speaker selection
- Barbara Clapp, Chief Executive Officer, The Jack and Nancy Dwyer Workforce Development Center
- Teresa Haag, Independent Fine Art Professional, Teresa Haag Art and Certified Life
- Kier Marshall, Psychotherapist, Soul-Renity and Consultative Supervisor, Loyola University Maryland
-Contacted and interviewed spokespeople
-Prepared speaking topics, suggested content, and Q&As for each speaker
Planning the program agenda
-Determined the best use of time
-Agenda included: introduction and housekeeping, question pool, intro of speakers, panel questions, Q&A from audience, recap, winners of giveaways
Preparing social media
-Established a social media plan and calendar to promote the event and speakers
-Drafted social media content
-Worked with graphic designer on designs for social, email blasts, website and social
Creating and determining giveaways
-Drafted “Say YES to Saying NO” checklist
-Drafted “Say YES to Saying NO” resource list
-Researched and outlined gift ideas
-Finalized raffle gifts ($100 Airbnb gift card, therapy dough, affirmation cards, and The Book of No)
-Worked with Polished Nichols client, EPC Style, to provide speaker gifts – a piece from the new EPC Style performance line
Managing the account
-Maintained and shared daily and weekly action items for committee members
-Assisted with sponsor and partner outreach
The virtual event took place on Thursday, October 28, 2021 from 12:15 – 1:30 p.m. on Zoom. With sponsor involvement, Say YES to Saying NO, was a free event for all attendees. The event was open to the public and 86 people registered with a 75% turn out of attendees.
With the increase in their social media presence, MWCA’s LinkedIn account increased its followers by 52% within three months. Having 107 followers since 2020, MWCA now has 167 followers. Becoming admins on the account, Polished Nichols has helped raise awareness about the organization and increase the followers and partners.
Testimonials From MWCA Founders:
“Natalie and Nicole from Polished Nichols PR & Marketing have been so gracious with their time to help with our Monument Women’s Creative Alliance (MWCA) events. They have gone above and beyond to manage, coordinate and flawlessly execute the events so that MWCA can put on a more polished and professional presence for our members and the creative community in Baltimore. We highly recommend them for any of your PR & Marketing needs.”
Rachel McFadden & Hazel Geary, MWCA, Founders
“Thank you isn’t even sufficient. We couldn’t have done the last event without you. We appreciate the email and we are so excited to have you onboard for 2 more events. As for your time, we also appreciate you letting us know that you spent close to 70 hours. To be honest, it showed. The amount of detail you went into did not go unnoticed.”
Hazel Geary, MWCA, Co-Founder
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