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At the start of your campaign it is useful to do a ‘SWOT’ Analysis. This means making lists of you and your opponents’ Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. These may change as your campaign develops.
Once you’ve started your campaigning you need to check regularly that everything is going to plan.
To understand if your campaign is working set some goals and milestones as an indicator of success. At the outset of any campaign you should create a timeline of milestone activities and include opportunities for evaluation.
Milestones could include actions taken, events held and meetings with key stakeholders. If you are working with others then assign key tasks to individuals – for example someone might be best at organising events, another person might be best at communication tasks.
Evaluate your campaign as you go along to check it's still on track and adjust your approach if you need to. If one campaigning tool isn’t working very well don’t be afraid to substitute it with a different one.
When taking an action such as a meeting it is important to spend time afterwards reflecting on how it went. If you do this then you can learn what works and what doesn’t which will help when you do future activities.
Evaluating your campaign throughout is the only way to work out what went well, what didn’t and what you might do differently next time.
Remember, many of the most significant campaigns took years to succeed. For example, the Disability Discrimination Act was the culmination of decades of campaigning that started at the community level.
Now you’ve done it once don’t let your new skills and confidence go to waste. Remember, the more you use the campaign toolkit the better you will get and the more creative you can be. You will probably develop some of your own techniques and tactics that you want to share with others.
Good luck and do let us know how you get on by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
A good link for campaign evaluation is on the KnowHow NonProfit website
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