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BlogMission Driven Marketing

Amplifying Voices: SE2’s Immersion in Feedback Labs

SE2 had the privilege of diving deep into the power of receiving feedback and closing the feedback loop with Feedback Labs, a dynamic nonprofit based in DC. The engaging course was led by Alexis Banks, Associate Director of Learning and Operations, Feedback Labs.

Feedback Labs’ Crash Course experience was enlightening and transformative, leaving a lasting impression on our team members. As people deeply invested in SE2’s mission, Mikhail (Mikey) Talley, Graciella (Gracie) Saucedo-Rivera, and I participated in the crash course alongside a diverse array of professionals from nonprofits and companies like housing authorities, grantee organizations, and advocacy groups.

Feedback, as I discovered, is the lifeblood of progress. It encompasses the thoughts, feelings, and perceptions of those directly impacted by an organization’s work. More than just a tool for evaluation, feedback has the power to shape future endeavors and foster equity. This fundamental concept lies at the core of Feedback Labs’ methodology, which centers around creating a feedback loop comprising five essential steps.

Before embarking on the feedback journey, establishing buy-in is crucial. Building trust and interest among stakeholders is the foundation for the entire process. Identifying these stakeholders – be they constituents, decision-makers, or frontline staff – ensures that the feedback gathered is comprehensive and representative.

  1. Design
    • The journey through the feedback loop begins with design, where goals are set, and contextual factors are considered.
  2. Collect
    • Next comes collection, a diverse array of methods ranging from surveys to focus groups, tailored to suit the unique needs of our audience.
  3. Analyze
    • An analysis follows suit, employing methodologies best suited to the data at hand.
  4. Dialogue
    • Dialogue then ensues, bridging the gap between data and action and refining feedback through open communication. 
  5. Course correct
    • Finally, course correction allows us to enact meaningful change informed by the feedback received, fostering transparency and accountability.

During the crash course, I considered two ways to apply this concept in my life.

The first was for professional reasons: to reach rural audiences to get their feedback and tell their stories. The second was for a personal passion project, a monthly drag show I produce and host once a month called StageFluid: an Open Stage Drag show. I considered how to continually improve the experience through feedback.

Gracie delved into the intricacies of equitable collaboration with community-based organizations, seeking to amplify their voices in a meaningful way. Meanwhile, Mikey explored the integration of community feedback into the early stages of campaign development, aiming for more authentic and impactful engagement.

Leaving the crash course, armed with newfound knowledge and actionable insights, I am eager to apply these methodologies in our work at SE2 and in my personal projects and passions. Feedback isn’t just a checkbox on our to-do list; it’s ingrained in our DNA and essential to the authenticity and efficacy of our marketing efforts.

We pave the way for a more equitable and impactful future by amplifying voices, fostering dialogue, and embracing change.

As I reflect on our experience with Feedback Labs, I invite you to consider the role of feedback in your own endeavors. How can you harness the power of feedback to drive meaningful change? And how will you ensure that your feedback loop remains open, inclusive, and responsive to the needs of those you serve? If you’re interested in taking part in a Feedback Labs event or workshop, you can learn more at

About the Author:

RJ Johnson (they/them) creates fun, engaging, and strategic content. They enjoy creative strategy, experimenting with content ideas, and storytelling. With over five years of experience in marketing, communications, and content management, they have touched just about every aspect of the field. A lifelong learner, RJ has an M.B.A. from the University of Colorado, Denver, and a B.F.A. in Creative Writing from Stephens College. RJ comes to SE2 from the health insurance sector and is passionate about aiding in the fight for equal opportunities and advocacy. They approach everything from a lens of intersectionality and community.