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Increasing our connection with those supporters who enable our mission the most

July 01 2013 | Communications,

During the balance of 2013 we will be making changes to a number of our key communication vehicles.

We are seeking to increase our connection with our deepest supporters.

The following are three changes we'll be making to our communications.

Doubling our communications to members. 

Making Waves is a digital communication that we sent out to members every other month. We are shifting this in three ways.

1. More user friendly. Every single issue must be readable and enjoyable regardless of where you are or what you're reading it on. This must be a great user experience if you're relaxing on a Sunday looking at your tablet, taking a lunch break on your office PC or standing in line looking at your phone. The content must look great on every platform and we know that today it does not.

2. More mission-centric content. This communication goes to members and members only. There are lots of groups who focus on oceans and beaches but NONE at the scale and delivering the impact we do. We know our members want to see, in detail, how we're using the funds they've entrusted to us. We will be increasing the emphasis on what is happening in our domestic chapter network. We have stunning stories (such as 12 coastal wins in the last 30 days) and members deserve to know about the impact they are enabling.

3. Doubling the frequency. Today our members get Making Waves every other month, we're moving to every month. The truth is that we have enough content to make this newsletter twice a month but we think once a month is an optimal frequency from the readers perspective.

Creating a net new print piece for donors.

Surfrider stopped printing a few years ago because we were buying, printing and distributing massive volumes of paper. It seemed counter-intuitive to our mission to do so.

What we've learned over these past few years is that this was the right call, an environmental organization should not be shipping hundreds of thousands of newsletters over a year. We've also learned that smaller runs, done with the smallest footprint possible, can answer the need of some supporters.

We think there is also a place for radically-smaller print runs of longer shelf-life, long-form journalism.

We will be creating a piece in small runs for our larger donors. We have heard that they desire such a piece and we want to partner with them to create something that they'll keep on their coffee table for a year. 

This communication will come out in the Winter and Spring of every year.

Decreasing communication to non-members.

We will be moving Soup, a general ocean-themed newsletter for non-members, from every week to every other week. It seems logical to invest less in this newsletter since its readers tend not to be members and are reading this publication to stay current on general coastal and ocean topics.

Of course we will continue to also suggest these readers find a place to plug into the Surfrider network (become members or connect with a local chapter) where they would immediately increase their Surfrider communications.  


No matter which group you fall into, thank you for your ongoing support of our mission.

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