Archive for 'Political Action Committees'

Change Management

For any government relations professional who must establish or reinvigorate their PAC, they are essentially in the change management field. This is a management discipline unto itself, but many neglect the importance of working the seams of change. The PAC then de-orbits and becomes a former “program of the month.”

Success in creating change is rooted in respect for the resistance to it. Mary Schell, Vice President of Government Affairs at Wendy’s International, Inc., started her PAC from scratch in 2003. ...

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How to Gain Internal Support, Status and Money for Your Grassroots and PAC Programs: Part Two

In Part 1 of this article, we found that they all practice the following:

  • Intrepid accountability
  • “The first sale is to yourself”
  • An internal marketing strategy
  • Attention to the launch

I wish I could gleefully report that we could push the proverbial “easy button” to secure permanent increases in resources and staff support. Alas, there isn’t one. In addition to the above factors, we found even more success indicators among our “85% Club” members.

Securing Internal Champions

Most of us are aware of the cardinal rule of ...

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How to Gain Internal Support, Status and Money for Your Grassroots and PAC Programs: Part One

Why do some government affairs departments, specifically grassroots and PAC operations, consistently get increased budget funding and staff resources while others struggle to justify their existence? We track our clients’ results, and what we found was startling.

After the conclusion of our collaborations, over 85% of our consulting clients have experienced long-term funding increases, increased staff resources, and enhanced internal status for their grassroots program and/or PAC. So, in hot pursuit of the truth, I wanted to find out what some ...

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The Good “S” Word

The good “s” word in PAC leadership is sales. The most successful PAC professionals know that they have to be superior salespeople.

They sell their PAC like crazed weasels (that’s a compliment) to PAC eligible employees and members, and also sell its’ virtues and results to senior organization leaders who can help or hinder their PAC development. They take nothing for granted. Unfortunately, many government relations professionals don’t practice this discipline.

My observation is that PAC professionals either do not believe in ...

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How To Get People To Respond To Action Alerts or Take Volunteer Leadership Roles

Laser in on what being involved in the advocacy network means. What does it mean when the volunteer joins in terms of their commitment and expected activity levels? Despite your nice graphics and catchy tag line, many times, there’s just no there there. The ubiquitous sign up usually goes like this: “Yes! I want to be involved in the advocacy network!” It’s nebulous – what does “involved” mean, exactly?

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Common Obstacles to Trust and How to Overcome Them: Part Three

We’re going to explore more common obstacles to trust and how to overcome them.

Negative communication

If we are truly grassroots professionals, we should embrace bottom up communication. Many times our messages only ask members to do something for us, or tell them what they should not be doing, saying, thinking, and so forth. It is important to be a carrier of good news. It affects how we are seen in the organization and how much time our advocates will give us ...

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More I2M Survey Results

Here are more results from our Innovate to Motivate® Success Survey. These results focus on PAC fundraising techniques and metrics.

One of the hallmarks of I2M is that we go beyond what is being discussed and commonly known to “drill down” and reveal patterns and data that can help us pursue political involvement excellence. I think you’ll find these results indicative of that philosophy.

Effective PAC Fundraising Techniques vs. Frequently Used Techniques

We asked our community two PAC fundraising questions:

  1. Which fundraising techniques are ...
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Common Obstacles to Trust and How to Overcome Them: Part Two

We’re going to explore more common obstacles to trust and how to overcome them.

Direction changes

The insidious impact of direction changes is why it is so important to foster a grassroots and PAC community within an organization. Campaigns definitely have their purpose, but they can reduce motivation in the long term unless community is created from them.

Our advocates will tolerate change, but not ambiguity. I’m thrilled to hear about organizations that are revitalizing their grassroots and PAC communities. However, the fact ...

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The Most Effective Way to Communicate With Your Legislator

I never know if the volunteer means effective in terms of time expended, or effective in terms of influence, so I always provide this two-pronged answer.

First, it depends on how that lawmaker prefers to be communicated with. The most influential lobbying groups know that each lawmaker is different and they have a retail, rather than wholesale, influence strategy approach.

That being said, the most effective way is not the most influential way, but those are two different roads. Effective in terms ...

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The Latest on PAC Burn Rates…

You’ve heard that you have to “spend money to make money” and that applies to PAC’s as well. But are there benchmarks on PAC operating expenses?

Dan Backer of Backer Capital Strategies released some detailed, useful research on PAC operating expenses. Rather than cherry-picking top PAC’s, he examined PAC operating expenses by receipts for a more accurate picture.

It’s worth a look…

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