Political Lobbying and Campaigning
Whether you’re a peak body looking to influence policy; a not-for-profit looking for government or private donor funding; a business looking to shift the needle on an economic matter; a health body looking to raise awareness of an issue or condition, or an advocacy body seeking to influence public debate, you need to campaign or lobby.
Staffed by experienced journalists, former political staffers, and lobbyists, Good Talent Media can run or help you formulate a campaign or lobbying effort in your sector.
What makes a campaign effective?
How impactful that goal depends not always on your budget, but on running a smart campaign. What to include in a campaign can vary, but what is always essential in a campaign is the ability to:
- Articulate a set of clear campaign goals
- Understand who you’re trying to win over
- Find supporters and allies
- Produce creative and convincing media content
A campaign might have the best ideas and case studies in the world, but if your key campaign messages aren’t publicly known, there is no compulsion for anyone to act on them.
The Most Important Elements to Lobbying
Some of the most important elements of a campaign include:
- Articulation of comprehensible and realistic goals
- Finding campaign Ambassadors, supporters, case studies and spokespeople
- Discerning distinct themes and facets of the campaign
- Producing a slate of media releases and media collateral
- Building out a strong media list
- Building out a social media content plan
- Getting your digital collateral up and running
- Having a launch event
There might be a lot to change in your sector or in public opinion, but don’t try and boil the ocean. One step at a time.
The framing of a campaign question, particularly if it’s divisive or controversial, is key. Make sure you understand what the values frame of the people you’re trying to win over are.
What makes lobbying effective?
Lobbying is very similar to campaigning, but it ultimately has a policy and funding objective attached to it.
In politics the squeaky wheel gets the grease. The campaign, peak body, business, or not-for-profit group that is, and appears to be, well organized is one that politicians identify as groups that can potentially inflict political damage.
Australian federal seats have 100,000+ people of voting age in them, with the most marginal seats sitting with a less than 3% buffer. Some seats like Herbert in 2016 was won by 27 votes.
An organized and systematic lobbying effort that can influence even 5 percent of an electorate is one that needs to be treated seriously by political parties. Remember, you don’t have to win 50% +1 voters in an electorate, you can be highly influential with swinging voters, who comprise 24% of the voting population.
Effectiveness of Structured Lobbying Campaign
While a well-resourced lobbying campaign is going to deepen your ability to wage a public campaign for your lobbying goals, you need as a foundation the following, to:
- Bring in industry peak bodies and supporters
- Establish an Expert Advisory Panel to define your policy goals
- Work out your budget and approach campaign funders
- Find Ambassadors, supporters, and case studies
- Create traditional, print, social, and digital media collateral
- Invite politicians to meetings to discuss campaign aims.
There are a lot more campaign elements that can be added, from adding a Patreon or Go Fund Me link in your social to raise money, fundraising events, establishing ‘Friends of…’ groups in parliament, interest and geo-targeted video for specific cohorts, geo-fencing and so on, but with imagination and a compelling media strategy, a lot can be achieved on more modest budgets.
Our Lobbying & Campaigning Work
PR Agency Good Talent Media ran a seven-week campaign for not-for-profit mental health group Wellways, to raise awareness of mental health stigma and what workplaces can do to make their workplaces bastions of good mental health.
Led by campaign ambassador Anthony ‘Lehmo’ Lehmann, the campaign found support from such groups as Price Waterhouse Coopers and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade and enjoyed media coverage on Seven News and Triple M.
Good Talent Media currently lobby for Dial Before You Dig. In the past our chief lobbyist worked on behalf of Pathology Awareness Australia, who were critical in getting the Turnbull government to reverse its decision in 2016 to cut bulk billing payments for pathology testing.
Raising at the time the third most signatures in Australian history, and using impactful social and digital collateral, the pathology sector was promised an additional $200 million in funding by Bill Shorten during the 2019 federal election.