In the political tech space, NationBuilder is a very popular platform for building around online mobilization. I have used NationBuilder on campaigns and have completed the “Certified Expert” course. So I have had a chance to explore tool and its capabilities. Because NationBuilder seems to be the “go to” platform for political and advocacy campaigns at the moment, I thought I would offer some thoughts for those who are looking at building a site using NationBuilder or incorporating it into their digital advocacy programme. Read more
In many ways, traditional campaigns haven’t changed in 30 years or more. Anyone who has ever run any kind of political campaign know that there are fairly consistent pillars of contemporary campaigns: brochures, signs, print/TV/radio ads, phone banks, canvassing and (more recently) digital. As an individual who advocates for a robust digital presence, I am constantly asked to provide evidence that money spend on online campaigning will produce concrete, measurable results.
That is understandable. Politics is about managing scarcity; so it is not a surprise that those managing a campaign would want to ensure that allocated funds are spent wisely. And one of the more compelling reasons to spend on digital is because of the ability to track and test everything you do. With standard analytics you can determine – with a great degree of accuracy – what does and does not work. Read more
Twitter makes it easy to communicate with others. When someone mentions you in a tweet, with a click of one button, you can reply to that individual right from your phone. Unfortunately, many elected officials and other representatives in the online political space do not take advantage of this simple feature. A perfect example of this is illustrated amongst the party leaders in the recent provincial election. Read more
I had the privilege of conducting a webinar for a number of members of an industry coalition that often finds itself as a target of numerous pressure groups on a regular basis. These pressure groups target the consumers of this industry in an attempt to embarrass the company into making changes the pressure groups feel are important.
There were five suggested strategies from the webinar that I presented to attendees. I feel these same five strategies are relevant to anyone who regular deals with an opponent, stakeholder group or any other coordinated efforts to damage their organization’s brand or otherwise cause trouble. Below is my advice on how to weather the storm in the digital space:
A house cannot withstand a hurricane if it doesn’t have a solid foundation and reinforced framing. It is never a good idea to start making plans on how to address a crisis once a campaign against your organization has already begun. Instead, it is important to start thinking about what possible issues could come up and what a communication and engagement plan under such a scenario would look like. While every campaign is different, an online campaign leaves a digital trail that you can analyze to better anticipate what may be coming. Read more
In the last week, I have had the chance to speak to two seasoned, skilled communications professionals about social media. Both had identified the need to bone up on their skillset in the online space and wanted my advice on what they should focus on. I thought I would share what I told them with you.
More than any other social platform, Twitter is probably the most important for those in the public relations or communications field. In my view, it is an essential skill to master. There are a few reasons. First, Twitter is where most public debates take place. Virtually any subject worth paying attention to – from the NHL lockout to the US Election to the Grammys – takes place on Twitter. Twitter describes their service as the “pulse of the planet”. Read more