“It’s very important to position your problems in a righteous way” - Recommendations on Advocacy and Information Campaigns (Armenia)

A media expert and a manager of media projects in Ukraine Andrey Kulakov was in Yerevan carrying out training sessions for representatives of different organizations on communication and advocacy campaigns within “Culture and Creativity” workshop organized with the support of the British Embassy in Armenia within EU-Eastern Partnership Culture and Creativity Programme. Currently, Mr Kulakov works at the Internews one of the leading media NGOs in Ukraine.

Tips for advocacy successful campaign from Andriy Kulakov: 

  • To formulate the problem

“To observe the situation and to understand the problem and the issues that are causing the problem at first glance can be very obvious, but it is important to analyze the existing data, analyze the situation, provide some solutions, then formulate quite specific problematic situations.

Next important step is to transform the problem into the problem of policy. One should find out who is the responsible person or institution, which are obliged to find proper solutions for existing problems in all possible levels, that is legislative or any other.

  • To define the target audience

“In order to reach a broader audience, one should plan a campaign in accordance with the needs and values of the target group. During the advocacy campaigns the key message for the group should be clear and the solutions should be proposed taking into account their relevance to the needs of the “stakeholders”, that are also legitimate and appropriate. Everything should be built on the audience. We should understand who is the target audience and then work on the content”

  • To discover the needs of the audience

“In order to carry out successful information campaigns the role of speakers is tremendously important. Their job is to discover the needs of the audience and work in accordance with them. To make sure your message reaches the audience one can engage celebrities, politicians and experts. Meanwhile, the target audience should be very exclusive. As much exclusive it is as easier it becomes to work with the group. In this cases it becomes much simpler to analyze the goals of the group, then define specific messages to reach them.”

  • To organize press tours, lunches, mass media events for journalists

“It is very important during information campaign to gather a group of journalists and take them to the specific field with which the project is somehow connected. Let’s say, if you are doing a cultural project, you can take the group to the museums or galleries and demonstrate new art related courses. Press lunches can be of another good example. You invite a foreign expert or a foreign politician together with chief editors of selected media and have off the record conversation with them on specific project. Through press lunches you provide the editors and their media outlets with exclusive access to the information you need them to acquire.

The mixture of art and mass media events are very useful; shows, performances, parades, demonstrations help to attract more public attention to the project. The easiest thing to do is to call for a press conference dedicated to the launch of the project. It might be boring but if you engage important speakers and/or experts you might reach your goal and gain the required attention.”

  • The importance of crowd funding and other methods for projects’ implementation

“It’s surprising for me to see that in post-soviet countries crowd funding possesses success and people voluntarily engage themselves into the implementation of various projects. These types of platforms leverage networks for greater reach and exposure of projects, as well as make individuals contribute to the implementation of those projects. If you could position your problems in a righteous way and demonstrate their importance to people, I believe, would want to have their contribution in finding solutions.”


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