If you are trying to convince someone else why an issue is important to you, you will probably be faced with answering questions such as “Why should I care?” and “What you do want me to do about it?”
Being able to effectively inform individuals about a topic and helping them answer those two questions are essential steps to beginning and implementing an advocacy campaign.
Bravo Group strives to help its clients with their advocacy efforts by using the strategic framework educate, motivate, and mobilize.
Jennifer Riley, managing director at Bravo, wrote a blog post discussing tips for building winning campaigns. She shared that, “When you educate an audience, you tell them about the issue. When you motivate them, you tell them why they should care, and when you mobilize them you actually get them to act on it.”
Bravo worked with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to pass legislation to regulate high-volume breeders’ treatment of dogs. This was important legislation because Pennsylvania was known for having many puppy mills.
Using the framework, Bravo, ASPCA, and HSUS successfully convinced the public and legislators to pass the law.
First Step: Educate
The first task was to educate people about the problems of puppy mills and why legislation was needed. Bravo worked with ASPCA and HSUS to provide legislative and public outreach. The organizations gave testimony at House and Senate hearings and created a series of one-pagers with information about puppy mills and the legislation.
Second Step: Motivate
This step of the process answers the question: “Why should I care?”Profiles of puppies that have gone through puppy mills were distributed to give personality to the cause. This approach helped motivate the public to talk to their legislators about the issue.
Third Step: Mobilize
The goal of mobilizing an audience is to help them answer the question “What you do want me to do about it?” With the help of Bravo Group, ASPCA and HSUS, dogs and their owners came and filled the Capitol steps to hear speeches from national animal advocates about the cause. Additionally, a website was created specifically to provide information to the public about the legislation. People were encouraged to contact their legislator about the bill.
In reality, changing opinions is a difficult task.Advocacy is not about changing minds; it’s about effecting change and showing others how the change will affect them.A successful advocacy campaign will provide a personal connection to the cause which creates a sense of urgency for action to be taken.
To learn more about advocacy strategies from Bravo Group colleagues check out these blog posts: