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How to Get Your Advocates Off Their Computers and On the Streets

Here is a basic checklist of what you’ll need to do to get more of your advocates off the computer and in front of their legislators and community groups.

  1. Know your organization’s ultimate persuasion goal. That will help you define #3 below.
  2. No matter how slick your tools, you will have little success moving people offline without a compelling message and a compelling messenger (See: Obama, Barack). This makes it vital to test your messages, rigorously evaluate your messengers, and recalibrate as necessary – be nimble. No one is stupid until he or she stops asking questions.
  3. Define the “next level.” This is different for everyone. One of my first clients told me they “wanted their advocates to go to the next level.” Knowing that many of them were active PAC fundraisers and already had relationships with their elected officials, I asked him to define what “next level” means to their organization. It meant getting them in front of opposition as well as allied groups to get support for their legislative issues. So, we conducted workshops on how to give a persuasive presentation. That was the “next level” for them. It may be different for your team members.
  4. Once you know the next level, create a path (with options) the advocate can follow to reach it. Ask yourself, “What is next logical step of involvement?”

Tune in to the second part of this list in a future post!