9. ADVOCATE for success

You should expect that traveling down this path to solutions that transform the system and bring measurable results will generate an enormous amount of highly focused and intense opposition to your efforts.

Without an engaged and supportive general populace to counter the inevitable opposition, serious reform is unlikely. In a democracy little can compete with an engaged public in helping the political benefits of innovation outweigh the costs.

Below are some strategies for animating the public around your innovation:

Tapping into a Shared Identity

  • Activate citizens by tapping into a shared goal or interest.
  • Meet people where they are—such as a school or place of worship.
  • Mobilize families around the notion that something is wrong by showing something right.

Building Trust and Commitment

  • Solidify reputation for reliability; creating infrastructure and a service model.
  • Give the activated group tools and direction to build broader public support.
  • Hold elected officials accountable.

Animating the Face of Change

  • Build broader public support by capturing the voice of those most affected.
  • Amplify voice by demonstrating something tangible around which citizens will mobilize.
  • Shine a light on poor performance and ineffective processes.
  • Understand both your audience and opposition.

In Action

A decade ago in Miami, business leader and entrepreneur David Lawrence rallied the public to invest in an unmet need. Lawrence created The Children’s Trust to galvanize support for investment in high-quality early childhood education and led a successful campaign for statewide free pre-K schooling for all four year olds.  Lawrence understood his audience and recognized the need to make this effort not just about “those” children who needed the help most, but about “our” children. He also tapped into parents’ belief that they ought to have a choice about where to send their children, as long as those choices meet quality standards.

Learn more about The Children’s Trust here.

Mobilize.org is unlocking the power and reach of the Internet to motivate thousands of millenials to participate and engage.  Its Democracy 2.0 Summits provide a vehicle for participants identify issues they believe are important and work together to craft ways to help address them.

Learn more about mobilize.org here.

Next: LEVERAGE social media