• Beat an Incumbent - Lessons From Winning Campaigns

    Beat an incumbent
    Posted on Dec 17, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Beat an Incumbent? Can Your Candidate Win Answer These Questions First.

    Incumbents are hard to beat. Campaigns start out with great intentions, but if you want to beat an incumbent, 94 percent of the time, challengers- (non -incumbents) will fall short. Many folks try, but on average, only 6 percent succeed in their quest to beat incumbents. Why do incumbents lose? Asking this question is a good place to start for challengers looking for a path forward. Most…
  • Member Communication: Make Membership Outreach Count

    lots of white chat bubbles member communication
    Posted on Dec 14, 2020 by Elena Veatch

     Member Communication Strategy: Tips to Amp Up Outreach

    For organizations large and small, member communication is the key to activating your people ahead of elections and key legislative votes. Depending on the size and nature of your group, your membership may be 1) unified around clear shared goals, or 2) dedicated to the same overarching values but at odds when it comes to the means for achieving them.  No matter your situation, take the time to talk to your members about their priorities and experiences to understand the issues that drive…
  • Advocacy Strategies for Lame Duck Sessions

    Several tub animals hanging out. Lame duck session
    Posted on Dec 10, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Lame Duck Sessions: Achieve Advocacy Goals  With Strategy

    Lame duck session should not come as a surprise. After election season is over, it’s easy to just want to hole up, make sour dough bread, chicken soup and shut off your political brain for a while. But across the country, as well as in Congress, we are about to go into the legislative season and lame duck sessions. Now is the time to be prepared for short-term and long-term legislative and advocacy fights ahead. As we prepare for…
  • Lobby Visits For Advocacy: Planning a Virtual Lobby Day

    planning on computer

    Lobby Day Tips: Make Your Virtual Lobby Days Impactful

    How can you get the most out of your Virtual lobby day? Every year groups go to Washington, D.C. or their state Capitol to try and impact legislation. At the same time, they are there with a dozen other groups doing lobby visits and it’s even hard to get nonprofit lobby days on the calendar. Lobby days can be a complicated business, but we’re here to help. Bottom line: If you want to make virtual lobby visit count, you need to think ahead and have a real plan. COVID-19 UPDATE: Especially…
  • Political Advertising Mediums - Pros and Cons

    birds eye view of a table with people using their technology
    Posted on Dec 03, 2020 by

    Political Advertising:  Choose The Right Medium for Your Campaign

    Choosing the right political advertising for your political campaign can make the difference between winning and losing. Which political advertising medium a campaign chooses depends largely on their strategic objectives, targets, and, of course, budget. Below is a very general overview of the most common modern candidate campaign communication mediums and their pros and cons. Remember, the key to success is often found in sending a cohesive message across multiple advertising…
  • 7 Qs Seth Masket Learning From Loss The Democrats

    Donkey and elephant face off Learning from loss
    Posted on Dec 02, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Seth Masket: The Democratic Party & Learning from Loss

    Seth Masket is a professor of political science and the director of the Center on American Politics at the University of Denver. His academic and research interests include political polarization, state and local politics, and campaigns and elections. Professor Masket is a regular contributor to FiveThirtyEight and the Mischiefs of Faction Blog. His latest book is Learning from Loss: The Democrats, 2016-2020, which explores…
  • Texting for Advocacy | Opt-in to SMS for Nonprofits

    Texting fot advocacy
    Posted on Nov 30, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him), Sophie Thurber (she/her)

    Texting for Advocacy: Issue Advocacy & Public Affairs SMS Tactics

    Are you texting for advocacy yet? If you’re a nonprofit working in the advocacy arena, you should be thinking about incorporating SMS (or texting) into your issue advocacy communications program. If you are looking for texting tools for advocacy, check out our list of 100 campaign tools. Texts are, in many ways, a very personal mode of communication – a quick way to…
  • Campaign Walk Cards - How to create Great Campaign Lit

    Volunteer at a door with a clipboard and a campaign walk card
    Posted on Nov 26, 2020 by Ben Holse (he/him)

    Campaign Walk Cards: What to Consider When You Write Walk Lit 

    Campaign walk cards are an important element to any field strategy. They give your canvassers something tangible to discuss at the doors and are a great way to introduce your candidate to voters. Unfortunately, a lot of campaigns create walk cards the wrong way. Below is advice on producing great political walk cards. How Do I Get Started?  For many voters, your campaign walk cards will be their first interaction with your candidate. As such, you want to make sure they stand out and…
  • Campaign Message Development: Use the Seven Cs

    Message development
    Posted on Nov 23, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Campaign Message: Make a Winning Contrast - Use the Seven Cs 

    When I was a student at American University in the mid to late ’80s I had some remarkable teachers. Joel Bradshaw and Peter Fenn taught me about campaign message with a method I have never forgotten. They called it the Seven Cs. I am still a big fan of this method to remember the components of a good campaign message. If you can incorporate all seven Cs in your message you will be smooth sailing. 1. Clear Make your message easily…
  • Political Campaign Strategy: Read these books to get a strategic edge

    row of old books
    Posted on Nov 19, 2020 by Elena Veatch

    Political Campaign Strategy: Read Up!

    To build an effective political campaign strategy, you need to understand the landscape your campaign is operating in. While talking to voters is always going to be the best way to get to know the issues that drive your community (and the larger American electorate), books are another great resource to inform your approach to politics. Below are five reads I recommend for any politico…
  • Digital Advocacy Consultant: Do You Need One?

    one woman advising another at a business setting - digital advocacy consultant
    Posted on Nov 16, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Digital Advocacy Consultant: Is It Worth the Cost To Hire a Online Campaign Consultant to Manage Your Digital Presence?

    Digital advocacy seems to be the term of the moment, but achieving real online advocacy results can be tough in both execution and budget.  If you are at a nonprofit where money is tight, (when is it not?), spending money on hiring a digital advocacy consultant to manage your digital and online presence can seem like an easy line item to cut. But don’t be so quick to count digital advocacy consultants out. Depending on your…
  • Patch-Through Calls: What Are They & When to Use Them.

    row of customer service representatives at work
    Posted on Nov 12, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Patch-Through Calls for Public Affairs & How to Make Them Count

    Organizations and campaigns use patch-through calls when they need a large number of people to reach out to elected officials. Using an outbound dialer, robots, volunteers, or paid callers, they make calls from a contact list. After speaking with the contact, they patch the call through to the concerned elected official. With the increasing need for advocacy and engagement in the age of COVID-19, we have seen a resurgence of patch-through calls. We are fans of the medium, but…
  • Political Blogs We Like! Get your State Political Blogs Here!

    Woman reading laptop political blogs
    Posted on Nov 09, 2020 by Joe Fuld (he/him)

    Political Blogs: The Best National & State Political Blogs 

    Political blogs as a news source seems very and 2004 but finding local and state specific perspectives on politics and communications matters. As quaint as it seems Try reading national and state political blogs. Here at The Campaign Workshop, we enjoy reading national and state-based political blogs to learn about local politics in states across the country and stay up to date on cutting edge campaign innovation. If you are looking for national political newsletters…
  • Post-Election Campaign Shutdown Checklist

    filled out checklist

    Our Quick Post-election Campaign Shutdown Checklist

    Is it time for the post-election shutdown for your campaign? Your campaign is finally over and you might be feeling a bit of that post-campaign emptiness inside. We understand that feeling and have a lot of insight on what to do after a win or a loss.  Like for most things in your campaign you’ll want to be thinking about a plan for your campaign…
  • After the Election Checklist

    election day on a calendar:  - After the election
    Posted on Nov 02, 2020 by Elena Veatch

    It’s the Day After the Election. Now What?

    It’s the day after the election — you finally made it. Whether you won or lost your political campaign, your operation won’t end as soon as the results are in. You ran an organization for months that hopefully bore semblance to a well-oiled machine. You likely had people on your payroll, whether it was one campaign manager or a whole team of dedicated staff. You probably had volunteers working around the clock to help get your message out. You definitely haven’t slept enough since the whole shebang…