Politics How To Campaign



The Politics How To Campaign section is a follow on from the section on understanding votes. The approach being used here is to take the principles about how to get votes and apply them for use on a larger scale. In many ways, it would be appropriate to deal with the networking aspects prior to this section. However, it is probably more beneficial to see how and where networking fits in before addressing how it is done.

The purpose of the Politics How to Campaign section is to focus on what is to be achieved through campaigning - and how specific techniques fit in or do not fit in depending on the circumstances. In particular, practical incidents, such as those introduced in the Rudd section will provide a solid understanding. For now, the focus is on how the "votes" techniques are applied more widely and what new techniques are required.

Leading leaders

In moving from very small numbers to large numbers of people to influence, the key difference is the medium of influence. While many will automatically think in terms of television and other mass media of today, the real essence is in terms of influence THROUGH others as opposed to DIRECT influence. This essential is overlooked or misunderstood by the vast majority of people when they consider Politics How To Campaign approaches.

Whether the eventual medium of distribution is television, web-broadcasting, online social interaction or going from town to town and addressing crowds from the back of a truck, the key to success in large numbers is the ability to influence KEY people. The techniques for doing this are the same as they are for small groups. The key is to build relationships for the long term and in the short term, the focus is on LISTENING and then concisely expressing your view in an slightly emotive appeal that is underpinned by a rational argument. In this way, success is based on acceptance by the key people - who will influence the majority in any subsequent vote.

So, who are these "key" people? How do you identify them? How do you influence them? In many cases, they will be "local leaders" of various kinds. Depending on your community, the individual may be a prosperous business person, the principal of the school, the head of the church in the local area or the editor of the local newspaper. They may be all of the above - where leadership is shared in the community. The key to identifying them is to LISTEN and you will hear their names mentioned in conversation and in the media. You might get some assistance in identifying them through LISTENING to others who have an interest in politics. The leaders will generally be the people who are organizing or speaking at the local functions such as the sporting carnivals, the religious festivals, the town parades. These events provide ideal opportunities to approach the leaders - and to be seen in their company!

When the "local leaders" are identified, you should seek their views and understand their reasons for them. In most cases, they will be quite willing to espouse their views. LISTEN. They will provide you with the understanding of the topical issues in the area. Do not argue with them. Thank them for their time. When necessary, you may need to express an alternate view, but the key to politics how to campaign is to align yourself with opinions that are acceptable to the vast majority.

Earlier on, it was pointed out that ACCEPTANCE is what is sought - not universal support. In order to increase your chances of success, it is important to align views with what would be acceptable rather than what is popular. Most voters will vote for a person who is recommended to them if there is nothing unacceptable about them. Very few voters actually seek a person with whom they share a detailed agreement on policy. A key part of this is acceptance than circumstances may change after an election - and so, it is the person's values rather than their policies which are considered.

Over a period of time, the local leaders will introduce and present you with more and more opportunities to communicate with different large groups. This may be "stand in your place" meetings through to major television appearances. The key is to stick to the relationship building approaches. LISTEN long and speak short. Use the language etc of the audience and speak in a slightly emotive appeal underpinned by a rational argument. Maintain views that are acceptable but do not seek to give views that are particularly popular.

These are especially relevant with talk show hosts - who have a very significant ability to influence people.


The focus on local leaders is not meant to be exclusive - and becoming acceptable to them may require that you perform certain actions. Some would like to see your involvement in charity or sporting activities. Some would expect that you spend time "door-knocking" to get the views of a wider audience. Some would expect that you be regularly available at a known place at a known time for social chat. Keep in mind that in most cases, these activities are about appeasing the leaders rather than that they will have any noticeable direct impact!

The result of all this activity is recommendation from the "leaders". This will lead to access to larger numbers of people and very often support and recommendation.


Throughout the section on Politics How To Campaign, the focus is on getting votes to "win". As such, it has less application to some political careers than others. For example, public servants may be much better served by retaining a solid theoretical view backed by historical evidence than to go with a currently accepted political opinion. Activists with a strong moral commitment will be far more respected than those who change with the accepted view of a situation. The "maverick" politician will need to express some "unacceptable" opinions as a way to maintain the image of "being representative rather than conformist". However, people in those groups will be well served by understanding, and using where appropriate, the items covered here.

While the focus for the Politics How To Campaign section is on leaders and your need to develop a network there, networking is important in other areas as well. With some understanding of the role of leaders, you will understand the importance of focusing considerable effort on them.

Summary

The Politics How To Campaign section goals are:Short term: Build "key" relationships with local leaders Listen long and speak short.

Long term: Build on the trust of the "leaders" to gain access to recommendations- using acceptable views and personal communications (slightly emotional appeal and a rational underpinning) through the mass media.

Time to progress to the

network.

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