The Jones Act Enforcer

Capturing National Media Attention for Longevity

the situation

In the rapidly growing offshore wind industry, American maritime companies and mariners are being unfairly disadvantaged. The Jones Act stipulates that the transport of merchandise between U.S. points should be reserved for U.S.-built, owned, and crewed vessels. However, there are concerns that foreign-flagged vessels and workers are being used instead of U.S.-made ships with American crews. This case study explores the efforts to enforce the Jones Act and ensure that American jobs go to American workers in the offshore maritime sector.

In order to raise awareness about the issue and garner support, Anna Stallmann Communications was hired by the Offshore Marine Service Association to develop and execute against a comprehensive communications strategy. The goal was to ensure that key political decision-makers, influential business leaders, and the general public understood the importance of enforcing the Jones Act and the impact it has on the American workforce. The strategy focused on earning media coverage, creating compelling visual content, and utilizing social media platforms.

photo of Jones Act Enforcer boat
OMSA logo

the project

To effectively communicate the message, Anna Stallmann Communications crafted a comprehensive communications strategy to ensure that we could effectively capture and engage top-tier media, while providing owned content to educate and inform their reporting. 

First, ASC developed a visually engaging video to showcase what journalists and the public could expect when boarding the Jones Act Enforcer. The video highlighted the importance of enforcing the law and ensuring American jobs. It was shared on various platforms, including the association’s website and social media channels. 

The team then continued nurturing relationships with both national and local media outlets – understanding the importance of the long-game. Journalists and photographers were invited to come aboard the Jones Act Enforcer, a vessel named after the law itself, to witness firsthand the lack of American vessels engaged in building offshore wind farms. This provided concrete visuals and allowed reporters to experience the situation themselves.

Recognizing the power of social media, ASC in parallel created an Instagram account to share the story from the perspective of the offshore maritime worker. Regular updates, behind-the-scenes content, and informative posts are distributed to engage with the target audience and amplify the message.

the results

The comprehensive communications efforts led to impressive results that exceeded expectations. The campaign earned nearly 300 media articles, including coverage from reputable outlets such as the Associated Press, the Boston Globe, Politico and the Huffington Post. The earned media coverage helped to raise awareness about the issue and put pressure on decision-makers to enforce the Jones Act. 

The visually appealing videos created for the campaign continue to attract thousands of views on a daily basis. Its compelling content effectively communicates the importance of American jobs in the offshore maritime sector.

The social media presence, particularly on Instagram and YouTube, has garnered a loyal and engaged following. The industry’s story is now being shared directly with the audience through regular updates, fostering a sense of community and advocacy.

All of these achievements were accomplished without any paid advertising dollars, showcasing the power of earned media and strategic communication efforts.

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