Citizens Academies

Recruitment & Advertising

Most communities recruit applicants to their programs using unpaid advertising tools. The following measures are often used:

  • Flyers at city/county facilities (athletic/recreation centers, libraries, etc.),
  • Info booth at local farmers market,
  • City/county electronic or printed newsletters,
  • City/county website,
  • Press releases (which sometimes result in newspaper articles or radio announcements),
  • Utility billing insert,
  • Box top pizza ads,
  • Local government cable television access programming,
  • Movie theater advertisement (static),
  • Staff visits to neighborhood associations/civic clubs,
  • Chamber of commerce newsletter or visit,
  • Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites, and importantly,
  • Word of mouth by alumni and/or staff and elected officials.


neighborhood college
Participants from Raleigh, NC, Neighborhood College visit the government cable access television studio


Some organizations have opted to supplement their unpaid methods with paid advertisements, such as:

  • Newspaper, radio, and television ads, and
  • Internet advertising (such as Facebook ads and promoted tweets).

While word of mouth widely remains the most successful advertising tool, other direct means of communication from organizers to potential participants have been important. In Cherryville, NC, staff members and elected officials have previously approached potential applicants directly, which helps give an extra nudge to citizens. This is more feasible in smaller communities, but larger communities frequently report success with basic word of mouth strategies.


Sample Publicity Materials


Please use the links below to access sample publicity materials from programs across North Carolina and the nation.


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