"Dear Journalist" community challenge — May's destination: Iceland 🇮🇸

We have a challenge for you!

Have you ever heard of the Dear Doctor postcards? Back in the 50s-60s, a laboratory in the US sent out thousands of handwritten postcards to doctors (often from exotic locations), telling them about a new medicine they had for sale… It was a refreshing and intriguing marketing plot, and it got us thinking. :thinking:

Postcrossing could definitely use more postcrossers in some countries to balance things out, and what better way to advertise a postcard exchange website than through postcards? So we thought maybe we as a community, could coordinate to do a sort of “Dear Journalist” campaign, and get together to send postcards to the media of a certain country, telling journalists there about the project and how great it is to receive postcards from far away places. Maybe they’ll be intrigued by the postcards they receive and decide to check it out, hopefully making a news report about Postcrossing and thus helping us spread the word!

Picking a country to focus on is a difficult task… but if it goes well, we could pick a new one each month, do our best to spread the word by sending postcards there throughout the month, measure the results at the end to see what worked, and then move on to another country.

So, there’s 2 parts to this challenge:

  1. finding addresses of media outlets in said country,
  2. sending postcards to those with a nice message about Postcrossing.

I suggest we post the (public) media addresses we find on a wiki below this first post, and then just keep each other updated on this topic on our collective efforts to send postcards to them. If you have some free time to do some research and/or a couple of postcards to spare, please consider helping out!


For this first month, we’ll be focusing on Iceland :iceland: !

Land of sagas, geysers, Björk… and currently just 212 postcrossers. :sob: It’s a small country with high GDP per capita (so people can probably afford this kind of hobby), with a well-functioning postal service, and where English is widely spoken, so we think it looks like a promising place to start this challenge!

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to first help us find those media contacts, and then send some postcards.

Ready, set, go! :muscle:

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(this post is a wiki, feel free to edit it directly)

TV channels

  • RÚV :heavy_check_mark::heavy_check_mark:
    Efstaleiti 1
    150 Reykjavík
    Iceland

  • Sjónvarp Símans :heavy_check_mark:
    Ármúli 25,
    108 Reykjavík
    Iceland

  • Stöð 2 :heavy_check_mark:
    Suðurlandsbraut 8,
    108 Reykjavík
    Iceland

Newspapers

  • Fréttablaðið :heavy_check_mark::heavy_check_mark:
    Kalkofnsvegur 2,
    101 Reykjavik,
    Iceland
    (main newspaper)

  • Morgunblaðið :heavy_check_mark::heavy_check_mark:
    Hádegismóum 2,
    110 Reykjavík
    Iceland

  • Viðskiptablaðið :heavy_check_mark:
    Myllusetur ehf.
    Ármúla 10
    108 Reykjavík
    Iceland

  • IceNews :heavy_check_mark::heavy_check_mark:
    Guðrúnartún 8
    105 Reykjavik
    Iceland
    (Online News Outlet, English language)

Magazines

Radio stations

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When I lived in Reykjavík, I read Reykjavík Grapevine. It is a magazine written in English. There is a culture section, where an article about Postcrossing might fit although I felt it was focused mainly on Icelandic culture (naturally). There is a lot of foreigners living in Reykjavík so in that sense it may be a good target audience :woman_shrugging:

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Sounds great! :+1: Do you think you could help us find their postal address?

This is the contact page. There is their postal address as well as some email addresses.

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Brilliant — I’ll add it to the list!

Ok! I’ve gotten us started with 10 media outlets that were mentioned on this wikipedia page.

I’m going to maybe write a short example text that people can use on their postcards if they want. Personalised texts are probably more effective, but just in case someone needs a little help getting started. :slight_smile:

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What a great idea!! I would love to participate, but it seems currently I can’t send mail to Iceland. :sob: So maybe to the next country…

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What a great project! Thank you for organising this @meiadeleite! :pray::smiley:

I will happily send some cards to Iceland.

Great idea @meiadeleite!
What about reaching out to philately groups? Maybe a Postcrosser has such connections?
And what about posting a news item in such newsletters as Postcard History, a digital publication.
Finally, I found this, but maybe someone already sent it to you: Icelandic Newspapers Online.

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One of the things that I’d strongly suggest is that Postcrossing Admin have some names of willing Icelandic Postcrossers who are willing to talk to the media about the value of Postcrossing if Postcrossing is contacted by the media.

Most media outlets are going to want a local angle to a story when making a decision to spend staff time & money on whether to cover a story or not.

And I’d put that in the generic message on the postcards we send. Something like : We can put you in touch with an Icelandic member of Postcrossing if you are interested in doing a story about Postcrossing.

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I think that postage prices are fairly high (like in all over Scandinavia), though. So the GDP might not be a true indicator of whether it’s affordable …
Tourism to Iceland is impacted by the pandemic as well - not sure how readily available postcards are right now.

With that being said, maybe the makers of visiticeland.com would also be interested: if people can’t visit Iceland right now, maybe they can promote Iceland that way - through postcards?!

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It seem the postage would be 220 kr / 250 kr (economy / priority). That’s about 1,45 € / 1,65 € or 1,75 USD / 2,00 USD.

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I thought about this too. Iceland is known for their creative and somewhat crazy ways to market the country for tourism, so they could possibly be interested.

I am happy to see some creative ways to increase member numbers from more rare countries, but I am also little skeptic about how this plan is going to work out. I am afraid that if there is suddenly huge amount of cards arriving and “marketing” Postcrossing, the people will get annoyed and decide this is just some kind of scam or something. Would it be better idea to pick up few volunteers and give them each an address or two to send postcard? So there will not be a flood of postcards suddenly showing up at some poor journalist’s desk.

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I was also wondering, wouldn’t it make sense to target one media (or one organisation like the tourist board) rather than have a list with many options? Wouldn’t that dilute the effort?
(I know we also don’t want to be annoying though, as already pointed out above…)

I don’t think Postcrossing is a good platform for marketing and I wouldn’t promote it as such. It was built as a hobby site and should stay that in my opinion. You are sending limited number of postcards to randomly selected people which makes it highly unsuitable for any kind of marketing, plus I imagine people wouldn’t be too happy if they started recieving pretty much advertisment instead of personal messages.

With help of World Radio TV Handbook (WRTH) I came to know that, 30+ FM Radios are there. Here is the details…

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I’ve visited Iceland a couple of times and like to write cards to the addresses.
When do you want to start? or can i do it anytime?

I’m happy that this challenge has piqued the interest of some of you already! :smiley: Let me address some of your concerns:

Both good ideas! Usually we do this quickly when journalists contact us, but I can get in touch with a few local members beforehand, just in case.

Good point! Still working on that text.

I’m… not sure on this. On one hand, yes, Postcrossing can work as an indirect way to market your own country to foreign visitors. On the other hand, the websites of the tourism institutions are focused on said visitors — they are for tourists to see. The goal here was more to spread the word about Postcrossing to Icelandic people themselves, and I’m not sure how the tourism board would go about that. :thinking:

A valid concern, but for now, I don’t think we risk hitting the annoyance threshold as this is just a topic in a corner of the forum. :slight_smile: Maybe one idea would be for people to post here on the topic when they’re sending a postcard and to which of these media outlets. That way, we’d keep a rough count (maybe on the wiki itself), direct efforts towards the ones less poked so far, and maybe even try to find new ones, if we see that a lot of people are participating.

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