More than 30 participants in the Lunch Bunch talked about effective communication strategies for promoting broadband causes at the Legislature this week. Nathan Zacharias of the MN Rural Broadband Coalition shared advice ranging from the general – common courtesy to the more specific – the coalition messaging strategy. You can see the Coalition’s materials on their web site – https://mnruralbroadbandcoalition.com .
Nathan was joined by a more unlikely, but interesting guest. Dorian Grilley is executive director of the MN Bicycle Coalition (BikeMN). This advocacy organization has become a force across the state with a Mayor’s Advisory Caucus and partnerships with MNDOT and Health Department. Dorian talked about the local chapters and certified cities programs that promote the benefits of cycling. Dorian had extensive data that documents how state investments and programs save infrastructure dollars and improve health and spur economic development. Broadband and bicycles are two ingredients that attract new residents and visitors. That list was expanded to include breweries and blues bands (and schools, but schools does not start with a “B”).
Nathan encouraged local entities to continue to promote the statewide speed test (on the coalition site) as a tool that provides a powerful picture to legislators interested in their own districts. Nathan and the coalition are planning for a Virtual Day at the Capitol for late spring, so watch for more news on that later.
Our March 10th discussion will focus on the benefits of publicly owned broadband networks. Register here: https://blandinfoundation-org.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMucOygqT4oE9z8V1akDGePCae1FdkwYCz0