The 10 elements below are key steps to go through when designing your NOC’s public affairs strategy.
Download the Public Affairs Guidelines here:
1. Analyse the situation
Keep in mind the following elements: characteristics of the issue (e.g., stages of the process, political context), key decision-makers, other relevant stakeholders influenced by or influencing the issue.
2. Set your objective
A common mistake, when engaging in public affairs campaigning, is not having a clearly defined campaign objective. It will make sense to consider questions like: which part of the legislation is unfavourable to us? How will it influence us unfavourably? And which concrete changes could be made to the legislation to mitigate this?
3. Use evidence
Solid evidence is increasingly required when presenting political solutions. Therefore, it is essential to provide numbers, data and scientific evidence that prove problem exists and requires your solution.
4. Build (and maintain) good relations
Building and maintaining relations is the bedrock of public affairs. The guidelines give you tips on how to do so.
5. Build alliances
The greater an alliance you can build around specific policy issue, the greater the chances you will be able to influence it. At the same time, it is important to understand that working in alliances with other stakeholders carries both advantages and disadvantages.
6. Identify key persons
You always need to consider who is the right person to approach at what time of the process.
7. Form key messages
Adapting the format and the content of communication to the type of counterpart is key.
8. Keep in mind that timing is everything
Public affairs campaigns should always consider when is the right time to address the right person, considering the stage of the process, the political/economic context, etc.
9. Use right communication channels
Not all communications channels and social media platforms are fit for the same purpose. The guidelines provide an overview of the good use of each of them.
10. Follow-up and repeat
Doing public affairs is a continuous task. Following up with the people engaged and evaluating the results of the campaign is necessary to ensure that it is fully successful.