After developing your strategy and drawing out a detailed campaign plan, it’s time to put the plan into practice! This section provides resources that can be helpful in implementing your campaign, including campaign management, leadership skills, volunteer recruitment, group meetings, communications, and digital security.

Core Campaign Operations

Taking direct action to promote change is the core of your campaign. Community Tool Box has guides to many different types of action, and you can choose the ones most relevant to your own campaign.

This site contains trainings on core skills for civic participation, including critical thinking, leadership, negotiation and external meetings.

Leadership Skills

Leading a campaign is difficult. Anticipating challenges and thinking through strategies to cope with setbacks will make you a better and more adaptable leader.

True community leadership is rooted in engaging with local cultural power to inspire others to achieve their goals and become leaders themselves. This resource suggests a mindset of leadership as a practice rather than as a position.

Working with the Community and Recruiting and Managing Volunteers

Your most successful interactions will be face-to-face. This page is a handy guide to making a good first impression and making specific requests.

Convincing others to volunteer for your campaign multiplies your power. This page gives advice on places to find volunteers and how to ask them to get involved.

At some point in your campaign, you will likely present your case to members of your community in order to publicize your work and gain support.

With a large number of volunteers, it makes sense to set up volunteer teams to organize their work (and take some responsibility off your shoulders). This video series explains how to build and sustain teams of volunteers.

Holding effective meetings is important for gathering people’s suggestions and making key decisions. This page walks you through planning effective meetings, facilitating open discussion, and managing disagreements or conflicts in your meetings.

Built-in Reflection

  • It is helpful to step back and consider how your campaign strategy and plan are working and whether you should make changes or adjustments while your campaign is underway. Gibbs’ reflective cycle is an excellent model to follow.

Communications and Social Media

Effectively communicating is central to success in advocacy. Whether you’re speaking to community members, potential volunteers, politicians, the press, or via social media, it is important to think about how you present yourself and your message to gain support. Such platforms can be useful for raising public awareness about the issue you want to address, building support for your campaign, and placing pressure on decision-makers to take action to address the problem at hand.

There are countless communications options to gain exposure for your cause. This guide will help you develop a communications plan and create a number of different media items.

Once you begin to build your campaign, you will want to reach out to the media to boost your exposure. This page can guide you through using news media to your campaign’s advantage.

Social media can be a powerful tool in your campaign under the right circumstances. This page explains how and when you should use social media to support your work.

Communicating your message through photos or video (digital storytelling) can have a powerful impact and help build support for your campaign. These guides can help you develop a digital storytelling plan and create a persuasive way to publicize your action. For a great example of digital storytelling, check out The Story of Stuff’s The Story of Bottled Water video.

Conflict Resolution

As you deal with disagreement and challenges from internal and external actors in your campaign, the way people discuss can make the difference between resolution and dysfunction. This page contains strategies for facilitating discussion through positive dialogue rather than adversarial debate.

Conflicts may develop over the course of your campaign, and it is important to address them so that they do not obstruct your work. This page contains a series of questions to help you think through and resolve conflicts as they arise.

Personal Safety & Digital Security

As you conduct your campaign, you should make you are acting in a safe manner and mitigating risks, both in the course of your actions and online. While you are unlikely to face any serious safety issues, it is worthwhile to consider common-sense ways to avoid potentially dangerous situations. For example, you should not send volunteers out alone at night or incite angry reactions from those who disagree with you. If for any reason you or your volunteers find yourselves in a dangerous situation, you should immediately disengage and contact the authorities, if appropriate.

In the course of your work, you may gather personal information about volunteers or supporters, including addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses. You should take steps to preserve that information for your work and also protect their privacy. You may also receive physical letters or notices from government offices or groups involved in your effort. It is wise to save your data and correspondence digitally to prevent it from being lost in the event of misplacement, fire, or theft.

The following resources on security may be helpful if you are concerned about operating safely and protecting information and communication regarding your campaign: