Practicing ArchitecturePracticing Architecture
NPR and PBS Sponsorship Opportunities Broaden the Reach of Repositioning Initiative
By Robert Ivy, FAIA
I am very pleased to share two exciting opportunities we’re taking advantage of to raise public awareness about architects and architecture. The first started on July 24th, when the AIA began its sponsorship of National Public Radio’s Cities Project, a weekly series. Airing on the popular afternoon broadcast, "All Things Considered," the segments will report on the trends of urban life today and the challenges facing today’s cities. Implicit in every story are the questions: How do we want to live? What do we want our cities to be?
Furthermore, members address these central questions across the spectrum of practice, from residential to regional design. The AIA sponsorship message will air immediately following each episode: “Support for NPR’s Cities Project comes from members of the American Institute of Architects; working to build better homes, businesses, and communities. Building for life. More at A-I-A dot o-r-g." (Here is an MP3 of an NPR Cities story featuring our sponsorship message.)
We'll receive additional mentions on "All Things Considered," and several mentions weekly on the "Diane Rehm Show," one of the most respected daily radio programs airing nationally. All told, in live broadcasts and in rebroadcasts online or on premium channels, the AIA message will reach nearly 60 million NPR listeners. You can see the schedule for the NPR Cities Series here.
The second opportunity lies in television and the web. Some of you met or saw Stephen Chung, AIA, at our annual convention, where he hosted our “Architect Live” broadcast center. He has been so committed to helping educate the public about architects and architecture that he’s created his own public television series that we will sponsor. The program he will host, "Cool Spaces," debuts this fall as a PBS primetime special, and will air on nearly every public television station in the country. His show will profile many of the most provocative and innovative structures in North America, all of which have strong public space. Stephen and his producers have developed a program that tells the story of what architects do and the impact of architecture in our lives that should capture the attention of both younger and older audiences. You can see a promotion video on the series here.
Through our sponsorship, an AIA message will be featured in the opening and closing credits, reaching 95 percent of U.S. households. Plus, we'll receive additional exposure through a website dedicated to the program.
We're fortunate to have the opportunity to support these two programs, which both demonstrate how architects add value and contribute to a better built environment. Adding our message of commitment helps build public recognition and relevance in a meaningful way.
Dovetailing with our repositioning efforts, these media opportunities will reach out as we continue our own planning. Their timing couldn’t be better.