We’ve been helping political parties with their campaigns for a long time now. Our clients help define and shape us into becoming a more comprehensive political communication tool.
Introducing Adam Taylor, the campaign manager for Jamie Parker, Australian Greens Party MP from Balmain, NSW. A few months ago, we sat down with Adam for an informal chat about him, his work and his learnings from managing campaigns.
Seven years ago Adam Taylor moved to Sydney, Australia from the United States. Adam, an environmental activist in his late teens-early 20’s, felt that there was very little available for him electorally in the US.
“Voting for a democrat or republican just didn’t make sense to me at all, zero sense” says Adam, “Luckily I got to hear Ralph Nader speak in ’98 – ’99, who was running for president on the Green ticket at that point, and it just changed my life. It actually made me realise that there is potential in these 3rd parties to have some representation.”
Adam heard of the growing popularity of the Greens Party in Australia and decided to help out there. Once in Australia, Adam met Jamie Parker, who was a member of the Australian greens and had a notable presence locally. He started out working as a volunteer for Jamie’s campaign. Jamie got elected in 2011. Four years later when Jamie decided to run again, Adam played a much bigger role. The challenge to get re-elected was much more significant.
“We implemented a lot of field campaigning and person to person contact and made sure that we were really reaching out and explaining our position on things to people.” says Adam, “Which is where we started looking into auto dialers and making more automated faster phone calls and things like that.”
Their first goal was to activate all their volunteers. According to Adam, the greens already had a large volunteer base and he decided to run a hyper local campaign. They organised teams and sub-teams for canvassing who they called “Door Knockers”. Their job was exactly that – knock on every door at least once and leave them with a bit of information. They followed up each door knock with a phone call and then continued phone call people as we went along. “Our goal was to call each house in the electorate which we did as well.”, says Adam.
That is when NationBuilder and CallHub came into the picture and helped boost their campaign to the next level.
How CallHub helped
“What we were doing previously was taking numbers and using the poll list function in NationBuilder and literally hand dialling calls.” as Adam recalls “And what I noticed with CallHub and just using the auto dialer in general is that rather than wanting to leave as fast as possible, people were still plugged in, they were still raring to go. Even beyond the time that we really liked for them to be.”
You see the energy all around because they’re consistently busy rather than constantly picking up, dialing and putting the phone down and feel like they’re being useful.”
Working with an older volunteer base also meant Adam and his team were cautious about going too techie and wanted the process to be easy to pick up.
“With CallHub, it doesn’t take long for them to say “I’m ready to get started!”. It’s been really nice.” says Adam.
Adam and the rest of the Australian Greens are gearing up for the next elections in 2019. But before that, they have the Federal elections in July and local council elections to go through. Being in office, they have also been consistently making calls to improve the community.
“By the time we get to 2019, my goal is to have people so used to volunteering and using these systems that it’ll just feel like another day.” says Adam “It won’t have to be a big ramp up, it’ll just be like ‘It’s Tuesday, let’s make calls on Tuesday”.
For the Australian Greens, tools like NationBuilder and CallHub prove to be a major game changer.
This is first in a series of conversations we intend to have with our incredibly interesting clients, partners and friends. Subscribe for updates!