Throughout American history, Pennsylvania has been critically important in national politics; it isn’t called the “Keystone State” for nothing. As a large swing state with 20 electoral votes, Pennsylvania is not only crucial for presidential candidates, it is also important in determining control of the U.S. House and the Senate. This was especially true in 2018.
At Ceisler Media, we don’t work on political campaigns, but politics is often at the heart of the work we do. We run campaigns – but on issues, not for candidates for office. As a statewide firm with decades of collective experience in Pennsylvania media and politics, Ceisler Media is perfectly positioned to help organizations amplify their message on issues of critical importance to Pennsylvanians, and ensure they help drive debate on these subjects.
We employ multiple campaign tactics to make sure our clients realize their strategic goals. Each campaign is different, and we tailor a strategy to the needs of each specific client. When we take on a new issue, our team studies it thoroughly and assesses how the political landscape will impact debate on the issue at hand. We then develop a strategic plan that will include tactics such as coalition building, identifying and recruiting influential voices, providing support with media relations and developing and implementing digital advertising and/or social media campaigns.
When the Immigration Hub wanted to get active in Pennsylvania, its leaders turned to Ceisler Media for help. This is a national organization dedicated to providing strategic support to a broad spectrum of organizations seeking to enact progressive immigration policies at the federal and state level.
Our team, led by Senior Associate Max Weisman in Philadelphia and Associate Drew Murren in Harrisburg, provided Immigration Hub with the on-the-ground expertise necessary to navigate a campaign cycle that was made all the more chaotic by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision to redraw the Congressional maps to remedy the Commonwealth’s gerrymandering problem.
Our team walked them through the newly-drawn districts, helping them understand how the races would be affected by the new maps, and highlighting areas where their message would most likely be impactful. Not only did we analyze the new Congressional districts for the client down to a county level, we also provided them with a political and demographic breakdown of the state at large to assist in their efforts in the election for U.S. Senate.
With that strategy in place, the Ceisler team built a statewide network of allies and surrogates who could address immigration issues from a local perspective. We also assisted them in designing and commissioning statewide polls to learn more about voters’ views on immigration, and potential avenues of persuasion. This quantitative research has formed the basis of the messaging strategy that we helped the Immigration Hub develop.
Our team also used its extensive media contacts to introduce the Immigration Hub to reporters from across the Commonwealth, and helped establish the client as an authority on immigration issues that media from across the state could rely on for expert analysis.
We have drafted and placed op-eds and letters to the editor in publications across the state on the client’s behalf, and also helped produce a series of short web videos that highlight the positive impact that immigrants have had on Pennsylvania and its economy. As the election approached, we worked to ensure that our client’s message stands out among all the noise of election season, and that Pennsylvanians understand the importance of immigration to the nation as a whole, and the Commonwealth in particular.
On election night, we worked to make sure that reporters who wanted comments on the impact immigration had on the races could reach the client quickly, and helped them design an exit poll to dig deep into how voters’ views on immigration impacted their vote. We then helped coordinate calls with media from across the state to discuss the results of the poll.
This is just one example of what we at Ceisler Media do. Pennsylvania is a large, diverse state, and its always-changing political landscape can be complicated to navigate. The Ceisler Media team possesses unparalleled expertise in Pennsylvania politics, and whether your organization needs to deliver its messages on a local, regional or statewide level, we can help you craft and deliver a message that will resonate with Pennsylvania voters.
Drew Murren is an Associate in Ceisler Media's Harrisburg office.