Nine Steps to Successful Campaigns
Other questions to ask are, “Is this the right time, and is there opposition to the campaign?” For example, smoke-free initiatives initially were met with some serious opposition. Bottom line: You should feel confident that you can run and have success with a campaign before starting it.
Stage 2: Set a clear, measurable, realistic goal
Grimm said she breaks this down into the good, the bad and the ugly. The good is when an organization has a very specific goal, like "pass a statewide ballot initiative in November of 2008 that imposes an additional 12 cent tax on tobacco products in California." The bad is a goal like "get legal counsel for more people who can't afford it when accused of a crime," and an ugly goal is "stop genocide." While absolutely worthy goals, the last two are not specific enough.
Your campaign goal should say exactly what needs to happen, by whom, where and when. Determine whether you're trying to make something happen or stop something from happening, and know what metrics you're going to measure.
Stage 3: Chart your course
The course, Grimm said, shows the steps you'll take in the campaign, likening it to a road trip. Chart those things that allow you to move to the next step in the campaign, taking into consideration the economic and political climate, your skill set, budget and timeline. Estimate the timing for each step on your course.
Questions to ask: Which option is fastest? Which is easiest? Can you learn from other organizations and campaigns that have had success in the past? What are some of the benchmarks that you could measure along the way to know that you're making real progress on your journey?
Research who your audience is and where you want change to occur? Do you seek a change in attitudes, behavior or priorities? Who possesses the power to influence the decision maker? Will it be a behind-the-scenes effort or a public effort? Who are potential allies/opposition? What secret weapons do you have (e.g., celebrity spokespeople)?