About ReThink Training

We deliver on-line and in-person media skills workshops for nonprofit of all sizes and select experts. Every session we do is uniquely tailored for the situation at hand. Since we limit both the number of issues we work on and the range of organizations involved, our workshops are solidly grounded in an understanding of the media landscape on that issue and the organizations involved.

No two workshops are alike, but we do have a core curriculum of sessions developed in response to the stated needs of the groups we work with. Below are short descriptions of sessions we commonly lead, but you are equally welcome to inquire about a unique need or situation that your organization faces. You’re also welcome to browse our selection of white papers and top tips and use what you need.

If you work in one of our issue areas and are interested in commissioning a media and communications training tailored to your organization's needs, email us at training@rethinkmedia.org

Digital Media Trainings

Building the Brand of Your Organization and Spokespeople Through Twitter

Tweeting and re-tweeting is one thing, but systematically using Twitter to implement a strategy is another. This session will focus on creating a long-term plan for building your organization’s presence––and your influence (60–90 min).

Building Your Expert Profile

Online expert profiles should effectively highlight past experience and skills to connect them with relevant stakeholders (like journalists). This training delves into spokespeople's online profiles on Twitter, LinkedIn, and on organizations' websites. It discusses the must-have content in these profiles to showcase spokespeople's expertise, as well as some strategies to engage reporters, advocates, and donors using these platforms (90 mins).

Creating an “Echo Chamber” with Social Media

It’s important to get the broadest impact out of every effort and to connect your traditional media outreach with digital media outreach. This session focuses on leveraging social media to expand the conversation on your issues (60–90 min).

Digital Ads 101

Your introduction to amplifying your work online through digital ads.

Digital Ads: Twitter and Snapchat Geofilters

How, when, and why Twitter ads and Snapchat geofilters are effective. This session includes budgeting, content creation, targets, and case studies from other nonprofits using these strategies.

Digital Ads: Facebook and Instagram

How, when, and why Facebook and Instagram ads are effective. This session includes targeting, budgeting, content creation, and tests to run.

Engaging Reporters on Twitter

Before reaching out to reporters on Twitter, follow these best practices to best tailor your outreach and make a good first impression. This training discusses how to build and maintain relationships with reporters using Twitter, as well as strategies to use Twitter to shape reporters' coverage. It explores ways to correct a reporter's coverage without ruining your relationship with them, as well as ways to be a good resource for reporters online (60-90 mins).

Hill Advocacy Using Social Media

Members of Congress increasingly value hearing from constituents on social media, and more than ever, social media can influence how a lawmaker votes on an issue. This training involves understanding what motivates members of Congress, including constituents, media coverage, and campaign contributions. It then details congressional use of social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Periscope, and Snapchat, as well as how advocacy groups can use these tools to influence lawmakers (90 mins).

Social Media Tactics

The basics of communications on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms.

Turning Your Social Media Moment into a Traditional Media Story

How to leverage your social media success to get earned coverage in traditional media—turning your online campaign moment into the breaking news story of the day.

Twitter 101

Creating and maintaining an active Twitter account means tweeting the right content to the right audience at the right time. This training explores lots of the Twitter basics, including setting up your profile, the anatomy of a tweet, how to find the best people to follow, tricks to pack as much content as possible into 140 characters, and how dynamic content (like images and videos) leads to better Twitter engagement (60-90 mins).

Your Digital Media Toolkit

New social media and digital tools are popping up every day, but which are the best for organizations to take advantage of to advance their policy goals? This training explores a number of tools in a digital campaigner's toolkit, from the usual Facebook and Twitter, to some of the newer tools like Snapchat and Periscope, as well as dozens of tools and platforms in between. The training discusses situations in which each platform is most useful, the amount of lead-time required to be effective, as well as examples of each of these tools being used effectively in advocacy settings (90 mins).

Media Strategy Trainings

11 Ways to Reach a New, Younger Audience

One way to increase the scope of your work is to make sure younger audiences understand why it’s relevant to them. This session outlines 11 ways to expand your outreach into their channels.

Connecting With Non-Expert Audiences

Sometimes issue experts think they need to “dumb down” their message––but that premise couldn’t be more wrong. Learn how to meet your audience where they are, respect them for what they know (and you don’t), and successfully communicate about difficult or wonky subject matter (90 min).

Developing Media Narratives

While “narrative” may be the most misused word in Washington today, this session explores how to craft a story that resonates with your target audience using metaphors and universal themes with the focus on changing the overall macro public discourse on the given topic (90 min).

Hill Communications

Engaging Capitol Hill communications staff in collaborative and strategic media campaigns that get your policies out there and make their boss look good in the process (60 min).

Intro to Rapid Response Communications

How to implement an effective communications response in a crisis.

Mapping Social Media and the Current Media Landscape

Your basic guide to navigating the overlap between current news media and social media, and how to join the conversation.

Marketing Communications

Describing an issue or topic is one thing. Describing it in a way that sounds compelling and engaging is another. Here’s your intro to the foundations of marketing in communications.

Message Testing on Muslim, Arab, and South Asian Issues

A walkthrough of the dominant narratives and biases various news audiences, including Base, Persuadables, and Opposition, hold in relation to Muslim, Arab, and South Asian issues in America.

So You Want To Release a Scholarly Paper, Report, or Study

The basics of releasing and marketing your paper, report, or study.

Strategic Communications

There’s “trying to get coverage” for things and then there is strategic communications––executing a deliberate plan to drive a story or a policy outcome. This session looks at 6 steps towards goal-oriented strategic campaigns designed to accomplish both organization and program goals. (NOTE: This session requires a minimum of 3 hrs).

The Social Psychology Behind Communications Strategy

An introduction to the social-psychological concepts that underpin all basic communications and media relations strategy.

Understanding Your Organization's Unique Media Profile

How your organization fits within the broad media landscape and how to leverage your unique position to fill news holes (90 min).

Values-based Communications

Shared values connect people from different walks of life, but they also form the basis of whether an audience does, or doesn’t, genuinely like a spokesperson or listen to them. Equally important, people remember messages that they feel; appeals to shared values are more likely to be retained than fact-based arguments (60–90 min).

Traditional Media Trainings

Building Reporter Relationships

An introduction to creating, maintaining, and growing your relationships with reporters, including online strategies.

Effective Interviewing (Print and Broadcast)

The basics of effective interview technique for both print and broadcast, along with on-camera practice with ReThink staff.

How To Write, Pitch, and Place an Op-Ed

Your in-depth guide to structuring, writing, pitching, and placing op-eds, and how to identify the best news moments in which to do so.

Letters to the Editor

How to write and submit an effective LTE.

Pitching 101

The key to getting placed in print, radio, and TV outlets is leveraging personal relationships with reporters, framing stories with strong hooks, writing tight subject lines, and providing reliable resources. We’ll walk you through all the ingredients of a great pitch (60–90 min).

Speed-Pitching Reporters Workshop (In-Person Only)

Practice pitching your great ideas to ReThink staff—on a tight timeline.

The Changing Media Landscape

Navigating the new landscape is critical and this session provides a roadmap. From Spanish-language outlets to news aggregators, from meeting the new needs of journalists to driving memes through images and videos, this session covers the waterfront of a new and evolving media world (90 min).

Understanding News Values

Understanding what journalists consider "news" plays a critical role in crafting your media engagement and releases. But the definition of "news" changes, depending upon audience and outlet. More than any other single factor, an understanding of news values determines whether the timing and content of your media outreach will be effective (90 min).

Upcoming Trainings

Special Topics in Digital Media (Webinar Only)

ReThink will deliver webinars on special topics related to current digital media moments, topics TBA.

Special Topics in Media Strategy

ReThink will deliver webinars on special media strategy topics related to current media moments, topics TBA.

Special Topics in Traditional Media (Webinar Only)

ReThink will deliver webinars on special topics related to current traditional media moments, topics TBA.

At ReThink, I most enjoy working with and learning from so many different groups and being able to see the positive impact our collaboration has.

Cristina Robinson
Associate Director for Voting Rights, Inclusive Democracy