Creating A Better Tomorrow: Celebrating Our 2023 Nonprofit Partnership!
At Poetica Marketing, we believe in the importance of giving back to the community. That’s why we donate 10 hours of our services every month to deserving nonprofits in the Pittsburgh region. Through 2023, we’ve offered support and guidance to Food Rescue Hero—an outstanding organization focused on solving hunger in Pittsburgh and beyond—and the 2023 Food Rescue Conference! Here’s a recap of what we did together this year! Note: You might remember our recap of working with Food Rescue Hero in 2022!
As professionals in digital marketing and live events, we have incredible power.
And I don’t say that to sound boastful.
Specialists in marketing and events have invaluable skill sets empowering them to connect people and brands in ways that can transform the world.
Here’s a quick example: On my first day of agency life, a fellow new hire (who was many years my senior) explained how his son’s school had recently defunded their music program.
Instead of accepting this as fate, this digital marketing pro launched a campaign on Facebook to encourage local parents to sign a petition and save the music program.
After collecting hundreds of signatures, he was able to prove to the school just how important music classes were.
And they decided to keep them.
There’s power in understanding the internet. There’s power in understanding live events. There’s power in combining them together.
And we’re driven to use our powers for good.
At Poetica Marketing, we believe in donating our energies every month to better the community, which is why we partnered with Food Rescue Hero back in 2022 for their first-ever national conference.
If you’re unaware, Food Rescue Hero is a tech organization developing tools to support food recovery operations by managing donations, volunteers, and rescue coordinations. Over the years, Food Rescue Hero’s technology has helped rescue and redistribute more than 160 million pounds of food that would have otherwise been thrown into a landfill.
Naturally, we were excited to partner with them again!
Partnering With Food Rescue Hero In 2023
Thanks to our work with Food Rescue Hero in 2022, we had a good idea of what we were getting into this year—and we already had a great working relationship with their team.
That said, we made some big shifts.
For one, we were able to apply all of the lessons we learned last year, and we showed up to our first meeting of 2023 with mountains of notes and expansive spreadsheets ready to keep us organized.
We also saw a major tech shift. While we used the podcasting tool StreamYard to live stream portions of the conference and keep costs down in 2022, Food Rescue Hero wanted something more interactive for their online attendees.
That pushed us to WebEx Events, a powerful platform with a slight learning curve to coordinate all of the online registrants and in-depth sessions Food Rescue Hero planned.
While Regina communicated with food vendors and the rest of the Food Rescue Hero team to ensure we were covered on all fronts, Pat dove deep into WebEx to ensure the nonprofit would enjoy two days of problem-free streaming.
To successfully pull that off, Poetica Marketing:
- Imported speaker information and headshots
- Imported sponsor information and logos
- Imported and scheduled online polls
- Imported and scheduled online announcements
- Imported the online schedule and details
- Scheduled practice sessions with speakers and moderators to troubleshoot tech issues before the conference started
The Week Of the Conference
In the days leading up to the conference, Regina traveled to the Food Rescue Hero headquarters in the East End Cooperative Ministries. There, she ensured the facilities were prepared for the two-day conference.
On Wednesday, Regina made last-minute preparations. Specifically, she:
- Checked in with the Food Rescue Hero team to ensure they had everything they needed
- Steamed tablecloths for the Great Hall
- Prepared materials for interactive displays in the conference lobby
- Prepped the kitchen and Great Hall for meals and presentations
- Prepped drink dispensers
- Double-checked that coffee and food orders would be picked up and/or delivered on time
On Thursday, we arrived at 7:00 AM to prepare for the first day. Regina ensured breakfast was ready and available in the Great Hall while Pat ensured WebEx was properly launched and that each session was ready to run on schedule.
As attendees filed into the building under Regina’s watchful eye, Pat coordinated with the Food Rescue Hero team to coordinate last-minute updates to the conference’s opening session.
The rest of the day was jam-packed.
Regina took care of:
- Ensuring attendees navigated through the building and both lobbies
- Coordinating volunteers and volunteer check-in
- Setting up interactive displays in the conference lobby
- Setting up refreshment stations
- Organizing, preparing, and cleaning up each meal
- Answering questions about allergens and dietary restrictions when needed
- Ensuring proper disposal of waste (compost vs. trash vs. recycling)
- Ensuring extra food was stored properly until it could be rescued
- Keeping the dining area clean and ready for sessions and the next meal
- Helping breweries get in and get set up for the happy hour
Meanwhile, Pat took care of:
- Managing each live session in WebEx Events
- Making announcements through WebEx Events
- Quickly resolving tech issues for speakers and moderators in WebEx Events
- Fielding phone calls, texts, and emails from speakers and moderators around the country in need of support
- Immediately downloading each session and uploading it to the Food Rescue Hero YouTube page (unlisted)
- Helping volunteers launch and moderate the evening session
Friday looked very similar. Once again, we arrived early to ensure we were prepared for the day.
As on Thursday, Regina managed the volunteers, coordinated the meals, and ensured the day moved along smoothly, while Pat continued managing the online sessions and occasional tech issues among speakers and moderators.
After the conference concluded and the attendees left the building, we enjoyed a celebratory round of champagne with the Food Rescue Hero team!
We’re thrilled to have once again worked alongside the inspiring Food Rescue Hero team!