Community Organizers Take on Marriage Equality (Manhattan Young Democrats @ YDA 2009)


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At the 2009 YDA Biennial Convention in Chicago, Manhattan Young Democrats gave a training on how to run a legislative action campaign, both online and offline, with a focus on their New Yorkers for Marriage Equality efforts.

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Community Organizers Take on Marriage Equality (Manhattan Young Democrats @ YDA 2009)

  1. 1. Community Organizers Take on Marriage Equality<br />Manhattan Young Democrats<br />Friday, August 7, 2009<br />2009 YDA Convention<br />
  2. 2. What are we going to talk about?<br />MYD’s campaign: <br />New Yorkers for Marriage Equality<br />How your chapter can help pass marriage equality in your state…<br />
  3. 3. First: What’s Up In Your Org?<br />What is the consensus of your membership re: Marriage Equality? (two ways to move fwd)<br />Entire Org Effort<br />Caucus or Sub Group Effort <br />
  4. 4. Research<br />History of Marriage Equality efforts in your state<br />Current Whip Count:<br />Governor<br />Legislators<br />Influential Orgs<br />Unions<br />Progressive Lobbying Orgs<br />Etc<br />
  5. 5. Coalition Building<br />Identify Potential Partners<br />LGBT Orgs<br />Local<br />State (see directory)<br />National - HRC, Stonewall Dems, Lamda Legal, Log Cabin (!)<br />- Regional/State rep or steering committee<br />ACLU (State Chapter – visit for info)<br />Other YDA Chapters in state<br />Dem/College/Youth Orgs<br />Fundraisers, Ideologically Aligned Media <br />
  6. 6. Assess Strengths + Weakness <br />(Of Your Coalition)<br />STRENGTHS<br />Lobbying Power, Government Contacts<br />Field Expertise<br />New Media<br />Press Outreach/Contacts<br />
  7. 7. Assess Strengths + Weakness <br />WEAKNESSES<br />Lobbying Power, Government Contacts<br />Financial/Influence Interests<br />Geographic Presence<br />Demographic Scope<br />Incompetence<br />Landmines<br />
  8. 8. Action Campaign<br />Specific Action Item <br />like a bill, an election, not just “Gay Rights”<br />Target? <br />Who?<br />What? Full Marriage, Civil Unions, Etc<br />We Did: State Senate<br />Method?<br />We Did: Constituency Activation<br />
  9. 9. Planning: Strategy & Communications<br />Branding/Marketing<br />Simple Focus<br />Messaging/Communications Outreach, Earned Media<br />Timing & Timeline<br />Measures of Success<br />
  10. 10. Planning: Build Your Team<br />Lean on your Coalition<br />Determine Responsibilities within Coalition<br />Obtain Time Commitments!<br />Intercommunication/Synchronicity<br />
  11. 11. MYD’s Team for NY Equality<br />Al<br />President<br />Chas<br />Creative & Tech<br />Beth<br />Communications<br />Emmy<br />New Media<br />Julie<br />Social Media<br />Shannon<br />Video<br />Andrew<br />Communications<br />Gloria<br />Social Media<br />Taylor<br />Pride Parade<br />
  12. 12. Planning: New Media<br />Site Design<br />Simplicity<br />Domain Name<br />Install Google Analtyics (It’s FREE!)<br /><br />
  13. 13. Planning: Demopolis<br />What kind of call to action will you use? NYers for Marriage Equality: Letters & Calls<br />How will you configure it?<br />
  14. 14. Planning: Communications<br />Write press releases for major events, including campaign launch (email for samples)<br />How to spin your story to get it picked up<br />Send the press releases to MSM, blogs, etc.<br />Hit issue-related media & blogs (e.g., Towelroad, HRC blogs)<br />Get creative: Perez Hilton helped out MYD<br />
  15. 15. Planning: Facebook<br />Set up a fan page (Why not a group?)<br />Branding same as site<br />How often should you status update?<br />What kind of content should you post?<br />Suggest to friends” to grow your network<br />
  16. 16. Planning: Twitter<br />Choose your hashtag. Less characters is better: #nyequality<br />Build a following for your account & hashtag<br />Use your chapter’s account<br /><br />More questions on how to use twitter? Email<br />
  17. 17. Planning: Other Social Media Tactics<br />Comment seeding<br />Reach out to other facebook fan pages, groups, communities<br />Communicate with other activists who focus on your issue using Twitter<br />Post to email lists<br />Use your network to get the word out – you’ll be surprised how much friends & former employers will help out (CNN, DailyKos, etc.)<br />
  18. 18. How to Use Your Connections to Elected Officials<br />Press Release/Conference<br />Media Favors/Contacts<br />Event Co-Participation<br />Marches/Rallies<br />Letter Delivery<br />
  19. 19. Planning is Done: It’s Launch Time<br />Hit all your messaging and contacts on the first day<br />What worked for MYD<br />Press release<br />Keep using your network of contacts to your advantage, “after the splash”<br />Use analytics, tracking and feedback to see how you are doing<br />
  20. 20. Keeping it going and ROI<br />Blog/Newsletter Support<br />React to News<br />News stories posted to Facebook<br />Releases for major events<br />Continue to grow your Facebook page<br />Use your twitter hashtag.<br />Show up at (& promote) events related to your issue.<br />
  21. 21. What’s Next for #nyequality?<br />“Take the Pledge” (in production now)<br />An additional round of action if bill comes to a vote in September<br />If not this year, we’ll be back at it for the 2010 legislative session.<br />
  22. 22. How can your chapter help?<br />In New York State?<br />Join our alliance<br />Direct your members to<br />Not in New York? Start your own campaign! Reach out to other local YDA chapters, HRC, your state’s ACLU chapter, Courage Campaign and others for partnerships.<br />
  23. 23. Thanks!<br />Questions?<br />Al:<br />Chas:<br />Emmy:<br />Julie:<br />Follow us on Twitter:<br />Become a fan:<br />