What is it?
Political campaigning is when you take action to get politicians to act in a certain way, change laws or influence a vote taking place.
For example, throughout history people have taken political action to ensure the approval of antidiscrimination laws, the establishment of marriages for same sex couples, abortion rights, divorce right, voting rights for women.
People acting on all of these issues engaged in political campaigning in order to influence government and parliamentarians to vote to change laws.
If you are not the elected representative proposing the legislation, you can use your voice in the public space to support or oppose the issue. You have a role to play in taking out stories, data and arguments to win public support and influence politicians to vote for your cause (or against opposition to your cause).
How do you do it?
Political campaigning requires you to use all the techniques at your disposal to get your message across.
That means using social media, door-to-door conversations, or organising an event.
When you engage with political campaigning, you need to be ready with:
- A clear understanding of your issue, including pros and cons arguments.
- Good counterarguments to the most common “cons”.
- Good pro-arguments adapted to the people you are speaking to.
When making your arguments, always consider who you are talking to. For example, if your campaign is about ageism in politics and reducing the voting age, somebody in your age range may be more receptive to a set of arguments. An older person or someone with different life experience could be more receptive to another type of argument.
Why and when should you use it?
You should use political campaigning tactics when there is an ongoing political debate around the issue you are campaigning for.
It is a way to gather more support for the issue and reconnect with the people who have paid attention to you in the past.
Political campaigning could also be the culmination of your work around your issue, if it was you who contributed to bring it to the core of the political debate, whether local, national or international.
Works best in combination with: