Organizing strategy that builds power and wins.
If all we do is scramble to win elections every two years or pass a bill every now and then, then that’s all we’re ever going to do. Our work isn’t over on election day and every fight is harder than the last, so every campaign must strategically build power. We leverage the opportunity of a campaign to bring people together, build relationships and build power.
During the 2018 midterms, leaders at Brady United Against Gun Violence identified two objectives for the campaign: “recharge the grassroots” and help gun violence prevention (GVP) champions win US House seats from NRA A-rated incumbents. Using tools like one-on-one meetings and house meetings, GVP activists came together to share stories, build relationships and plan for action. We blew past goals for identifying new potential leaders and engaging members in campaigns. Many long-time members, who had never talked to a voter, joined fellow activists for canvassing and phonebank shifts on “Gun Violence Prevention” Days on each of the targeted campaigns. Chapters found new leaders and volunteers – and 89% of the targeted candidates won. When the new Congress started the following January, a new universal background check bill was one of the first three bills the House passed.
“Mira’s organizing plan for our midterms campaign not only helped us win in 89% of our targeted districts, but more members engaged in campaigns than ever before. Her focus on building relationships, then moving together to action, not only meant victory on election night – but also more inspired, engaged and fired up activists for everything that comes after.“
– Kris Brown, President, Brady United Against Gun Violence
Difficult conversations and light bulb moments.
Disrupting white supremacy culture means exploring identity, history and privilege. It also means having some intentional conversations. We create space in training and discussions for participants to question what they think is normal, unlearn harmful lessons and learn new ones.
The organizing committee of a new education justice organization was not representative of the education community. Leaders were concerned that this mismatch meant that their priorities were not aligned with teachers, students and families in schools. To build a more diverse, equitable and inclusive organization, we created a plan that included exploration and learning sessions for the existing organizing committee, one-on-one meetings with members of color, door-to-door canvassing and a community meeting. Two outcomes of this plan were a more diverse and inclusive organizing committee and a better alignment with community educational needs.
“Mira’s plan helped us reach out more authentically to a diverse cross section of our membership and the community. Our organizing committee grew stronger and we started to build better connections to parents and teachers. Her understanding of and commitment to our values made the difference.”
– Amie Ninh, Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Clever; former SF ONE Organizing Committee member
We win campaigns.
We bring field, messaging and overall strategy together to win. Our campaigns emphasize building relationships with voters so you can win on the issues that inspired you to run in the first place. We put our experience in races up and down the ballot, from city council to statewide ballot measures, to work to help you achieve victory.
Everyone knows the 2020 Democratic story: all eyes were on the race for White House and traditional campaign tactics were off-limits because of covid-19. In the Huntington Beach city council race, there are additional challenges for progressive Democrats: the city’s reputation as the place where southern California white supremacists come out to play, low contribution limits and an at-large race. To overcome these hurdles, we designed a strategy that relied heavily on building relationships, identifying and developing new leaders and reaching out multiple targeted universes. To stand out in this crowded cycle, we sent over 100,000 peer-to-peer text messages, made thousands of phone calls and engaged volunteers in relational organizing. The relationships we built enabled us to inoculate against the inevitable October surprise and stay on track. Proving once again, that victory depends on good field, messaging that resonates and a great team, not yard signs.
“Mira led a great strategy during the weirdest campaign on record. She wrangled together a team like no one I’ve ever seen. By election day, we’d exceeded our goal for contacts, built a team of over 100 volunteers and won decisively. Her field, messaging and relationship-building expertise made the difference in my campaign.”
– Huntington Beach City Councilmember Dan Kalmick
The right organizing education prepares staff, members and volunteers to win – today and tomorrow.
Adults – including young ones! – learn by doing. We can’t just recite information and expect them to internalize it. Our training is participatory, interactive and customized for your organization. We’ve facilitated training about concepts as abstract as power and as concrete as facts about a ballot measure.
Members of Leadership for Educational Equity (LEE) were new to organizing. This group was accustomed to facing a challenge with research, data and reports. To encourage them to think about organizing to build power, we designed a series of workshops, starting with Organizing 101. The series included sessions on one-on-one meetings, house meetings and story-telling. In that election cycle, members organized the largest school board candidate forum in the City and the only one that centered the voices of students, teachers and school personnel.
“Mira’s training smarts brought LEE’s program to the next level. She created or re-imagined sessions that helped members learn concepts and practice skills. Her creative, interactive curriculum made abstract concepts real. And every session included an actionable assignment so participants could put their new skills to work right away.“
– Brianna Twofoot, National Organizing Director, Planned Parenthood Federation of America; former Vice President, Organizing, Leadership for Educational Equity
Your message should tell a story that people want to hear.
We work with you to develop stories that resonate with your audience. Our communications and digital strategy help you connect authentically – and move voters, members, followers and volunteers to action.
The LGBTQ Center of Orange County needed help to create a social media voice and spread the word about events and programs. To start, we introduced volunteers to the strength of stories. We worked with staff and volunteers to build a narrative of social justice, humanity and community. As the Center provides services to many communities, posts and images often included information in two or three languages. We also developed some systems to help stabilize the marketing process, including an editorial calendar, a new marketing support request tracker and a cataloging tool for image details. By highlighting volunteers’ stories, we jump-started the feed on three platforms, painting a picture of community with which followers could identify. We also developed some systems to help stabilize the marketing process, including an editorial calendar, a new marketing We also developed some systems to help stabilize the marketing process, including an editorial calendar, a new marketing
“Mira helped us re-establish our social media voice – one that is uplifting, assertive and inclusive. She encouraged volunteers to tell stories to inspire followers. She found engaging content and collaborated with our staff to make sure the messaging fit. In addition, she developed several tools so that we could continue to build on her work. I so appreciate all she did for the Center.“
-Peg Corley, Executive Director, LGBTQ Center of Orange County