Monthly Archives: September, 2017

Metrics that Matter: Measuring Quality Grassroots Engagement

By Amy Showalter

Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, when concurring with the majority opinion in Jacobellis v. Ohio tried to define what constitutes obscenity: “. . . . I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description, and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it . . . “

I often think of that statement when defining quality grassroots engagement, as almost every advocacy professional knows it when they see it. It’s a high bar, because the cacophony of voter sentiment is abundant and intense. And virtually every grassroots professional I have advised or observed admits that quality is what matters most for their grassroots development, and they want more involvement from quality advocates.

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Money: How to run with the big dogs when there is no budget for big lobby

By Andy Krakowski

“We could spend tens of thousands of dollars going into key districts, or we could focus on a few key contacts in that district that we already know have connections with legislators and will give us a better impact.”

- Director of Grassroots at a national trade association

If you think the key to winning a legislative campaign is to outspend your opposition, you are likely in for a rude awakening. In 2016, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, over $3.15 billion dollars was spent on lobbying in DC alone and your organization would have needed to spend about $11.5 million just to crack the top 20 lobbying groups.

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