Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent nationally and in all 50 states reaching constituents, mobilizing coalitions, and influencing opinion on behalf of public affairs campaigns. Reaching your goals though in today’s diverse environment is becoming increasingly complex. Webinar attendees heard from public affairs experts including Mike Madrid (GrassrootsLab), Jamarah Hayner (JKH Consulting), Vincent Jones (Reinvent Communications), and Margita Thompson (California Resources Corporation) as they discussed how to ensure you are appropriately managing your campaigns and conveying your message to each voter base on January 31st.
- We are seeing a new level of engagement from the American people. This causes a very interesting change to strategy because you have to find a way to talk to folks that have cared about your issues for years, but also those individuals that just started listening.
- Women need to be meaningfully represented. This requires taking a real and meaningful look at where the women are in your company. We want to see equal dollars and positions, not just a diversity clause in your company manual.
- Women used to be seen as a liability in the past when running a campaign, but that is just not the case anymore. We are seeing historic numbers of women running, and lately it seems as if the following is true: when women run, women win.
- Corporations should be looking at who they are giving a seat at the table, even down to the interns. Now more than ever it is extremely important to have a diverse workforce at every level.
- Social media is a great way to give people in the community a platform. Interacting with your constituents via social media can be really effective.
About Jamarah: In her decade of experience, Jamarah Hayner has led community involvement efforts for both public- and private-sector clients, as well as for leading elected officials, in New York, Southern California and Phoenix. Throughout her career, she has helped clients ensure that communities and small businesses are valued stakeholders in projects affecting their neighborhoods, with a special focus in the areas of transportation, aviation, real estate and housing policy, and workforce development.
- There is a tendency to assume that people of color will turnout for Democratic candidates, but that is not always the case. Candidates must actively associate with people of color voters to make sure they know the important issues. Both parties need to respond to the demands of their constituents before voters will turnout to support them.
- Some might say that Latinos and African Americans turnout less than their white counterparts, but actually in Los Angeles County, African Americans outperform their white counterparts. Parties need to show people of color that they are changing the way they target diverse groups.
- The Democratic party, in my opinion, is being saved by people of color voters. There should be more diverse voters put to the forefront to mimic this shift.
- The individuals that raise money for candidates need to check their own biases because, from what I’ve seen, they are less interested in raising money for women of color candidates.
- Social media is a great organizing tool and a great way to promote a candidate’s identity. It will always be a good complement to a sound digital strategy, but it can never replace email promotion completely.
About Vincent: Vincent Jones is CEO and Chief Strategist of Reinvent Communications in Los Angeles. His career spans the worlds of philanthropy, non-profits, politics, and new media. Most recently, as Deputy Director of Campaigns and Senior Program Officer at the Liberty Hill Foundation, he built a regional donor mobilization initiative, developed innovative grantmaking programs, raised over $2,000,000, and advised high net worth individuals in the leveraging of their giving through donor-advised accounts and giving circles.
- From a corporate perspective, we need more political consulting insight. Millennials are aging up and have a shifting view of what companies need to do. For example, charitable giving is very important to them.
- We need to have authenticity in our corporation and the way to do this is to have diverse workers. We have also created programs to show the community that we care and are willing to help in any way possible.
- The general public is immune to big corporate companies at this point. We need to personify the company and show the way we reflect the diverse tapestry of California.
- The most important way to help women candidates is to help them fundraise. This is key to any campaign, and it is more difficult for women to ask for money.
- Millennials are creating a real change. Their experiences in the workplace should hopefully be a lot different than other generations, which should positively drive change in the political sphere.
About Margita: Margita Thompson is currently Vice President of Communications for California Resources Corporation (CRC), the state’s largest independent oil and natural gas producer. Thompson leads a team charged with unprecedented community and media engagement.
A huge thank you to our speakers for sharing their expertise with the AAPC membership!