Posts Tagged 'influence'

The Final Three Persuasion Lessons from the Final Presidential Debate: Obama’s Zingers vs. Romney’s Restraint

This blog post first appeared on

In my last post, I shared some persuasion lessons from the first Presidential and Vice Presidential debates. Because each debate reveals new persuasion tactics and lessons, I couldn’t resist writing a sequel to my Continue Reading →

Underdog Watch: Rhode Island State Treasurer Gina Raimondo

I was gratified to see The Wall Street Journal run an opinion piece on Gina Raimondo, Rhode Island State Treasurer, for her work overhauling the state’s pension system.

I picked her as one of my “Top Underdog Persuaders of 2011”, which is featured on Fortune Management’s ’s CNN  Money  site:

I know what you are thinking—- she’s the Rhode Island State Treasurer, so she can’t be an underdog.  However, underdog status is contextual; the position and resources ...

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Single Voice (On Steroids) Sinks Coast Guard Rule

I read a recent article in Roll Call entitled “Single Voice Sinks Coast Guard Rule.” It told the story of Susan Balistrei who  “single- handily” caused the Coast Guard to rescind a regulation relative to life jacket design. The article was also featured in the September 27 edition of the K Street Cafe blog:

The Coast Guard issued a new rule regarding life jacket design without providing for public comment because it “considered this rule to ...

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How to Spend Money on Surveys that Don’t Get Results Part 2

Here’s how to really determine if ads are effective: advertise some products, and don’t advertise others. Then see which sells. All those “advertisements that don’t work” will sell the product. Those that are unadvertised will sit on the shelf. When you ask people why they bought the advertised product, they will mention positive product attributes, but seldom advertising.

No matter if you are selling a message, a request for action, or a PAC contribution, the lesson for government relations professionals is ...

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How to Spend Money on Surveys that Don’t Get Results Part 1

No, that’s not a typo. Although many organizations have the best intentions when it comes to conducting influence campaign research, I’ve seen some rival the “burn rate” of a circa 2000 internet start-up company without persuading their audiences. That results in wasted resources and a credibility hit for the government relations professionals at the scene of the crime.

On a somewhat related note, it reminds me of a comment (and I’m not making this up) at a recent conference where someone ...

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The Bailout and Persuasion Tactics. . . .or, “If I’ve Learned One Thing, It’s Never One Thing” Part 2

Key Influentials and Mind-Changers

It gets even more interesting when you look at the lawmakers who did change their minds and their reasons why.

Our survey showed that undecided lawmakers are more likely to change their minds if they hear from people they trust. We call those people “key influentials;” personal friends, local elected officials and opinion leaders in the legislator’s district.

At least 10 of the lawmakers who changed their mind and voted “yes” on the second vote said they were influenced ...

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The Bailout and Persuasion Tactics. . . .or, “If I’ve Learned One Thing, It’s Never One Thing” Part 1

I read with interest some blog postings and news accounts of the votes by the U.S. House of Representatives on the $700 billion Wall Street rescue plan. Some were straight news accounts, other heralded that the vote results were directly correlated to citizen grassroots input and nothing else. As one who promotes the grassroots persuasion “lifestyle,” you’d think I’d be doing a victory dance at these “insights.” Au contraire, it reminded me how attributing influence success to one tactic is ...

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“May I Help You?”

One technique for building relationships is to find ways to help the “big dog” you want to influence. Joel Ulland, who represents the Minnesota Chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society before the Minnesota state legislature, built a relationship with an unlikely person of power long before he needed the relationship.

Ulland is a member of several coalitions for Minnesotans with disabilities. In the spring of 2005, Minnesota was reeling through three years of budget cuts. Ulland knew this meant tough times ...

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Mixing Business and Politics

You may have seen the recent research from the University of Tennessee, in which Russell Crook, David Woehr and Sean Lux have found that yes, indeed, mixing business and politics makes good financial sense. Continue Reading →

Invest in Political Careers

Chip Thayer, a well-known antismoking advocate and volunteer for the American Cancer Society in Massachusetts, turned heads with his advocacy success.

Thayer persuaded a conservative Republican state legislator to vote for a bill that would ban smoking in the workplace in 2004. In fact, state Senator Scott Brown had voted against the smoking ban when he served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. That gave Thayer the tough challenge of asking Brown to change his vote, a request reserved for only ...

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