When a political candidate prepares to run for office, building and managing effective political campaigns is one of the most important assignments they face. For many, working with a political consultant is the best way to ensure that every aspect runs smoothly.
As the name suggests, political consultants are experts who specialize in politics and political campaigns. However, what exactly do they do, and how can political consulting firms help you navigate the political landscape? Here is all you need to know.
What do political consultants do?
As per Law Insider, a political consultant is “paid by a candidate, or paid by another person on behalf of and with the knowledge of the candidate, to provide political advice to the candidate.” In other words, they are tasked with assisting and advising political campaigns.
A political consultancy firm can provide a range of services to a range of political candidates for various political campaigns such as local elections, presidential campaigns, and running for office at a State level.
Political consultancy firms use an extensive list of skills and industry-specific experience to support candidates with many different assignments. Ultimately, though, they advise their clients to build clear strategies and present their campaigns in the most effective way.
What services do political consulting firms actually provide?
The concept of assisting political parties and candidates is a little broad. In truth, political consultants may deliver generic advice or specialize in one of several key issues. Some of the most common political consulting services are;
- Campaign message development,
- Political risk assessments,
- Campaign budget management,
- Political media management,
- Opposition and voter research.
Campaign message development
Political candidates need to develop a clear campaign message and find ways to express their manifesto in a concise yet engaging way that resonates with the intended audience of public voters and decision-makers. Campaign message development may focus on a single theme or several concepts that feed into one overall message.
Given that it is the foundation of a successful campaign, many national political leaders regularly hire the services of a professional political consultancy firm to devise targeted campaign messages either as a standalone service or as a central ingredient in the recipe for a comprehensive approach.
Political risk assessments
Many political consultants do not only specialize in promoting the emotional connection between political candidates and their audiences. In many cases, their expertise can play a meaningful role in data analysis to run thorough political risk assessments. In turn, their policy research could prevent political campaigns from capitulating.
Strategic advice can cover a range of factors, including domestic jurisprudence and international treaty obligations, safety, intellectual property protection, governmental and economic stability, and culture. Progressive leaders will be keen to embrace the proper campaign infrastructure from the start.
Campaign budget management
Creating a campaign strategy that expresses a clear message is one thing. However, it is equally important to manage the campaign finances. Political consulting firms can assist the campaign manager by guiding them towards cost-effective political marketing ideas and finding ways to identify and reach a target audience of critical people and voters. The services can cover digital strategy and offline campaigns.
Political consulting firms can deliver various related services for local state, and federal campaigners. The strategies are devised with political nonprofit organizations in mind. They can cover every aspect, from working out how a budget should be distributed to actively identifying opportunities where an influence can be made to win campaigns and voter trust. The work can also extend to fundraising efforts.
Political media management
Political consulting firms also establish relationships between campaigners and the media through dedicated media management activities. Individual political consultants may focus on arranging events, writing press releases, running social media ads, using direct mail, or preparing candidates so that they know how to handle the public and journalists.
Campaign consulting that covers media management helps improve public opinion. As well as helping them win elections, a professional political consultant will show their understanding of social media regulations and other limitations for political ads and campaigns. In turn, the overall media strategy becomes watertight while simultaneously allowing candidates to focus on other vital matters.
Opposition and voter research
Whether a global strategy group or a political consultant working in a local environment, their approach to data analysis can be priceless for candidates. It saves valuable time for the candidate while consultants analyze the results to provide clear insights into how the opposition can be discredited or a target audience can be won over. Either way, this will strengthen the candidate’s political strategy.
From presidential campaigns down to small local elections, the data collected to discredit an opposition can sway the voting significantly. While mudslinging is ill-advised, opposition research will form a central part of strategic planning. Publicizing candidates while simultaneously damaging other candidates’ campaigns is a tried and tested method guaranteed to get results. Political consultants can help.
What to look for in a political consultant
Hiring a political consulting firm could make or break your entire campaign, so you must partner with a company that gives you 100% confidence. Ask yourself the following questions for guidance, and you should find the right option;
- Are the services offered aligned with the services my campaign needs?
- Does the political consulting firm have a solid track record?
- Can the political consultant show that they know my type of campaign?
- Does the political consultant understand my audience of voters?
- How much of their time can the political consulting firm offer?
- Do good internal interactions support strategic communications?
- Do I have the budget to pay for the consulting services?
- What are their existing media relations and press relationships like?
Finally, you should always trust your gut instinct. Arranging a consultation will give you a chance to seek the answers you need.
Take your political campaigns to the next level
If you are in the early stages of a local, national, or international political campaign, political consulting firms can give you the best chance of developing a strong campaign that is engaging and consistent.
Here at Audentes, we specialize in political risk analysis and consulting. To learn more about our available political risk consulting services contact the Audentes team today.