Hotline, Fall 2003
by Jonathan Nadle, GASP President
One of GASP’s ongoing goals is to enhance communication with our members and supporters. Three main ways we communicate are by our quarterly newsletter, which you are now reading, our website, and the “GASP Alert” e-mail list.
The new kid on the communications block is the Alert list. Individuals sign up for it via the website or a call to our office, as close to 300 of you have done so far. The list is a quick way for us to be able to alert our supporters to take action on an issue, to inform about events they may wish to attend, and to show media coverage of GASP efforts.
GASP’s Communications Committee recently sent out a survey questionnaire to Alert list subscribers to get their views on our communication tools and suggestions for improvements. The response was encouraging. Most survey respondents commented favorably on our efforts. We appreciate the suggestions we received and will use them to help us further improve our interactions with you. If you haven’t done so yet, we encourage you to check out our website and consider joining our Alert list. Survey highlights include:
- We decided to normally send not more than 4 Alert messages per month, reasoning this is enough to get important and/or time-sensitive messages out, but not enough to be annoying or excessive. Of the survey respondents who had an opinion on it, 90% felt this amount was “just right,” while 10% each felt it was too few or too many.
- Slightly over half of the respondents are also subscribed to other environmental group mailing lists. There were a wide diversity of groups represented, but the Sierra Club was the most prevalent. Surprisingly, perhaps, there were relatively few instances of “cross-posting” messages with other lists reported. When that did occur, 70% said they didn’t mind getting similar messages from different sources, while 63% felt that this actually reinforces the message and encourages taking action.
- People visit the GASP website for a variety of reasons, but the three most common ones were to: research air quality issues; read about GASP’s most recent activities; and to learn more about GASP.A few of the comments/suggestions from the survey:
“GASP is my one source for air-quality information.”
“I like to be informed, but experience information overload.”
“Keep up the good work!”
“Think they (Hotline, website, Alert list) are all worthwhile, can tell a lot of hard work is put into them. Could be a little flashier, but the content is wonderful.”
That last comment is probably a fair summary of GASP as a whole. We’re a local outfit with an all volunteer board and a small paid staff. But we manage to do a lot with a little. We’re effective and we care about results. While we strive to keep our communications informative and interesting, and have enhanced them by making greater use of graphics and photos (see our website’s new color logo!), we’re not in imminent danger of becoming overly slick or flashy. GASP will continue to work hard, putting content and substance above image when it comes to fighting for clean air and our region’s environment.