Re: Marketing efforts that worked well?
From: Ann Zabaldo (
Date: Mon, 30 Jun 2014 07:47:34 -0700 (PDT)
Hello Carolyn and all Coho-L folks.

I misinterpreted your email Carolyn as coming from you and your group.  Your 
email was actually a response to another inquiry in the thread.

Since there was no quoted text from the email you were answering I thought I 
was responding to an original posting. 

Apologies for the confusion.   

Regardless, doesn’t change anything about my fondness for Iowa or the questions 
I asked regarding marketing.  And I’d still love to know more about your 
outreach via your NPR station has worked for you.

Best --

Ann Zabaldo
Takoma Village Cohousing
Washington, DC
Principal, Cohousing Collaborative, LLC
Falls Church VA

On Jun 29, 2014, at 11:30 PM, Carolyn Dyer <cdyer1621 [at]> wrote:

> Iowa City Cohousing, which is in the process of submitting our site plan to
> the city planning and zoning commission and has about one-third of the
> needed member households, regularly asks folks who express and interest in
> us how they learned about us.  Most often people mention  an announcement
> on Iowa Public Radio.  We have done them 3 or 4 times and they are repeated
> about 10 times over a couple of weeks.  Expensive, but a good audience.
> We hold informational meetings 2 times a month and post posters in area
> businesses and libraries.  We have put ads in the programs of the city's
> summer arts festival, the program of a performing arts center, and notices
> in all the online calendars of events we can find and qualify for. Word of
> mouth is important, too.
> We hold a "Friends of Iowa City Cohousing" meetings once a month at which
> we have a speaker on a topic of interest to us that  we hope other people
> who will find interesting and then learn about us in the process.  Examples
> of topics include: natural play areas, a project in which an area town is
> putting the whole community on a solar grid, edible landscapes, how to  get
> funds for a down payment from a home equity loan or second mortgage, and
> sustainable storm water management.
> We have developed an email mailing list of about 200 people who have
> expressed even the slightest interest, and we notify people about every
> event.
> We also have field trips open to anyone on our mailing list--to many
> different small houses, places using different kinds of heating and cooling
> systems, a salvage barn, IKEA to see kitchen layouts, to another cohousing
> community, etc.  The field trips are fun, and  people get to know  us on
> the sometimes long rides and meals we share along the way. People have
> joined right after one or another of our field trips. In my view, all these
> things add up.  As time goes on, more and more people are familiar with us
> and an ad or poster or announcement finally strikes a chord and moves a
> person to attend an informational meeting. and follow up.  Our website
> contains a great deal of information about us, our values, our site, etc.
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