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Anthropology Day Media Toolkit
1. About Anthropology Day
The American Anthropological Association is celebrating anthropology and anthropologists around the world through the declaration of Anthropology Day.
Anthropology Day is a day for anthropologists to celebrate and participate in their discipline with the public around them. Help us celebrate what anthropology is and what it can achieve by hosting an event in your community, on your campus or in your workplace.
2. Planning Your Press Campaign
Make sure you utilize local media as much as possible, as this is a great source of publicity for your events! Think about the audience you would like to attract and where they would get their news from
You may have contacts already, but if not, research your local media and compile a list of people who may be interested in your event. Your university publication, blog, or radio station is a great place to start.
You could look at local radio and TV channels, online groups, or community calendars, and you’ll need to include news editors, listings editors, and features editors in print media, and producers of TV and radio that cover events and local news. Don’t forget to include digital media contacts as well! Popular event listing sites include: Craigslist, EventBrite, Eventful, Eviesays, Yelp, and Zvents. To find local listing sites, try searching the websites of TV and radio news stations for your area, the website for your city or town, and community websites. You can also try searching 'CITY events' or 'STATE events' and see if there are other event listing sites specifically for your area.
Read the publications that you’re targeting before you reach out to your contacts so that you can tailor your pitch to the kinds of articles that they usually write and the features that they might be interested in running.
Will your event feature new research or artifacts that have only been recently released or discovered? Stories like these are great for feature writers.
Can you link your event to anything going on in your area, such as a current exhibition or historical anniversary? Local journalists like things with human interest or local angles.
Check the deadlines for your local media. Most weekly newspapers need submissions at least 2 weeks in advance, and you can contact broadcast crews 1 week ahead of time.
Respond to information requests as quickly as possible, journalists are on tight deadlines and need an immediate response.
Keep track of which editors, journalists, and bloggers you send press releases to. Follow up with them a couple of days later with a phone call to see if they are interested in your event.
3. Writing a Successful Press Release
The basic toolkit you will need consists of two things: a press release and an image.
Writing your press release:
Keep it clear and simple. Put a short, catchy headline at the top and date it.
Include all the most important information about your event. Remember the 5 W’s: what, when, where, why, and who. Ensure that it has a local angle, but don’t forget to mention that it’s part of Anthropology Day.
Information on how to attend your event should be included either in the body of the press release or at the bottom. This should include details about the time and location of the event, as well as ticket price if applicable. Put a contact name and phone number at the bottom of the release, and ensure that someone is available to respond to journalists’ inquiries, such as requests for interviews or to stage a photoshoot.
NOTE: Most editorial departments don’t accept email attachments. Copy your press release into the body of the message, and mention that there are images available.
4. Online Promotion
Promote Anthropology Day on your own website! Make sure that the details and contact information for your event are clear. If your organization is part of a group or has affiliates, see if they can post information on their sites as well.
If your organization has a blog you can build anticipation for the event by posting stories about the event planning and preparation process. You can even take some photos of yourselves at work! Use a conversational voice in your posts to draw people in, and include a call to action like a link to your event listing.
Social media is important for raising awareness and tracking interest in your event and Anthropology Day in general. Promote your event on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and any other social networking sites that you use. Be sure to use #AnthroDay.
If you don’t have any social media accounts for your organization, you may want to create them. Before you create an account, make sure that you will be able to continually maintain it and that it will reach the people that you expect your event or organization to attract.
Be sure to tag AAA’s Twitter (@AmericanAnthro) and Facebook (AmericanAnthropologicalAssociation) accounts in any updates you have about your event leading up to, during, or after the big day.
5. Print Publicity
It’s a good idea to create flyers or posters for your event (or you can just use our flyer), which you can put up in visible areas around your community. You can customize and print posters from the Anthropology Day website.
Some great locations for flyers are notice boards, tourist information centers, local hotels, other attractions whose visitors might like your event, and places like coffee shops, libraries, or churches where members of the community gather and spend a lot of time.
Good luck with your event, we hope you have a fantastic Anthropology Day experience! Be sure to tag AAA of your activities so that we can help share your efforts within our networks. Send your media pieces to Gabrielle Dunkley.
This toolkit is adapted from the Archaeological Institute of America’s International Archaeology Day toolkit. More information about their international initiative can be found at: