What Exactly Is Political Campaign Consulting? (It's Also Older Than You Think)

Politicians rely heavily on their staff to keep them informed on what's happening in the region they are responsible for. They also rely on specially trained people who help them run election campaigns and consult with them on various topics. What exactly is political campaign consulting? There actually is a lot to it and it's older than you might think.

Political Campaign Consultants

The idea of political consulting actually came out of the corporate world, in which trained consultants advised company owners over concerns in their business. A political campaign consultant advises and helps guide a political campaign through the mass media including television and Internet outlets.

Their duties don't stop there, however; they also do research on the candidate's opposition, do voter polling, help with field strategy and come up with ideas to get voters not only to vote but to vote for their candidate.

Where did Political Campaign Consulting Come From?

Political campaign consulting dates back to the 1930s when one of the first consulting firms was created. They focused solely on political campaigns instead of splitting their expertise between several industries. Although established at least 30 years earlier, political campaign consultants didn't flourish until television became wider reaching in the 1960s.

What Are Their Duties?

A political campaign consultant can act as a strategist helping to promote certain candidates for elections. They organize campaign strategies, help to hire and organize staff and come up with ways to promote their candidate and the causes their candidate is behind.

The job entails acting as public relations between the candidate and the public, campaign managers, keeping the whole process running as smoothly as possible and, also as organizers of print, media and television advertising to make voters aware of their presence and which causes and issues are part of the candidate's platform.

How the Job is Changing

While the core position has remained pretty much the same since it began, the job duties and how the job is done are changing. The advent of social media platforms has greatly changed how younger people receive their information. In fact, many of the younger generation no longer watch traditional TV and spend most of their time reading websites and connecting on social media sites.

The political campaign consultant must find new and innovative ways to attract the attention of these tech savvy voters and do it using their own medium. This means they must connect or be well-versed in the workings of modern media and realize that the traditional forms of print and television may not be as effective in the future.