What wins lasting change in today’s world? Nimble teams building creative and transformative advocacy campaigns that engage people in meaningful ways.
That’s why we developed the Campaign Accelerator, a collaborative planning process that blends tried and true strategy tools with the best of design thinking, lean start-up principles, and participatory approaches to problem solving. The result? Greater insight, innovation and alignment, leading to greater campaign success.
Want to learn how to lead your own team through the Campaign Accelerator process? Bring us to your organisation for a private training or attend one of our several public trainings throughout the year.
Upcoming Public Trainings
How It Works
A Campaign Accelerator training is typically five days long, during which participants learn to:
- Uncover new opportunities to addresses the root causes of an issue through systems thinking
- Generate and test ideas to inspire and engage key audiences and build power
- Foster a collaborative team culture that embraces learning and iteration throughout a project cycle
- Integrate new planning approaches that help established teams navigate increasingly complex environments
- Design people-centred campaign strategies and actionable campaign plans
This is a dynamic process. We brainstorm and experiment. We leave the training room and interact with our key audiences. We work together across disciplines and expertise, welcoming diverse perspectives.
The curriculum also includes a 90-minute virtual session before we gather in person and a personalised coaching session with one of our expert trainers. After the training, participants join a peer support network of Campaign Accelerator alumni around the world.
Find out more about the Campaign Accelerator training, directly from past participants:
Day 1: Define
On day 1, we explore the problem, our positive vision for the future, and the strategies that might help us get there. We examine root causes and identify ways we could intervene systemically to address the problem. We look at approaches that our organisations could take to create change and develop hypotheses about what might be most fruitful.
Day 2: Sense
On day 2, we deepen our understanding of the people we want to engage. We do this by conducting research and interviews to better understand needs, motivations and barriers. We use the insights generated from this work to further refine our strategy and inform our next step: creative idea generation.
Day 3: Create
On day 3, the team develops campaign ideas based on insights from the previous day. We employ a structured development process based on creative principles and typically invite external guests to maximize creativity. We use agreed criteria to select several testable ideas that put audiences at the centre of our efforts to bring about change.
Day 4: Prototype & Test
On day 4, we discover which ideas resonate with key audiences by creating low fidelity prototypes and testing them through field research. By the end the day, we will have selected a strategy, defined the target audiences, agreed on which ideas we will take forward, and identified improvements based on audience feedback.
Day 5: Plan
The final day sees the team align around a campaign plan that synthesizes all of our prior work. We develop an outline of the plan, including the story, engagement strategy, and immediate next steps. We define what success will look like and how it will be measured. Finally, we create a timeline with clearly assigned tasks and roles. We also explore how the team will work together to deliver this new plan.
Is This for Me?
The Campaign Accelerator training is ideal for those who:
- Work directly with advocacy or campaign teams or regularly help lead campaign planning processes;
- Can support the implementation and monitor the impact of this approach;
- Have prior experience facilitating group strategy processes;
- And are participating with colleagues or their team. This methodology is best facilitated by two or more people, so you will get the most value from this training if you have other colleagues trained in the process.
Getting ready to build a campaign?
We regularly facilitate private Campaign Accelerator workshops to support teams in delivering an actionable plan. Click here to find out how to bring one to your organisation.
Public Campaign Accelerator trainings use a sliding scale based on organisational budget. Private training costs vary based on based on several factors, including number of participants and location.
Click here to see upcoming dates and locations of public Campaign Accelerator trainings.
If you’d like to bring the Campaign Accelerator training to your organisation, get in touch: email@example.com
Please note that we do our best to accommodate schedules, but our current availability is limited due to demand.
What sorts of campaigns can I plan using the Campaign Accelerator methodology?
The Campaign Accelerator is most useful for campaigns in the earliest stages of development. That is, projects with the “raw materials”—a challenge, research, an understanding of the context, and key stakeholders—but without a clearly defined strategy and plan are ideal. The Campaign Accelerator also presumes that people power will play an essential role in achieving success.
Who needs to participate in the training?
For public trainings, it’s best that you register with at least one colleague. The Campaign Accelerator methodology is best facilitated by two or more people, so you will get the most value from this training if you have other colleagues trained in the process.
For private trainings, participant make-up will vary based on the specific needs and circumstances of your organisation.
When and where is the training held?
We typically run a Campaign Accelerator Training from Monday through Friday. Public trainings are announced several months in advance of the date. Private trainings are arranged individually. We have specific space and location requirements for the training to be a success, so please discuss these with your facilitator.
Can this happen in a language other than English?
We are actively recruiting facilitators who can run trainings in languages other than English, with some already available, including in Arabic, French, German, Hindi and Spanish. We have also run these in several locations with simultaneous translation.
What will we get out of the training?
You will learn a process that aligns your team around an actionable project plan with clear steps for implementation. You will also learn new tools and techniques for producing campaigns that are strategic and innovative and that meaningfully engage your key audiences. Not to mention, this is a great opportunity for teams to learn how to work collaboratively, accomplish something together, and have some constructive fun.
What are some problems that this methodology addresses?
We designed the Campaign Accelerator methodology to address a question that we heard with increasingly frequency from colleagues: “How can I plan a high-impact campaign with people power at the heart?”
Additionally, the Campaign Accelerator resolves or at least mitigates all of these potential issues:
- General boredom with “traditional” or “business as usual” planning processes, which can result in unimaginative campaigns that feel like they’ve been done before
- Strategy developed by a subsection of a team that, even if it makes sense, can’t be executed because the full team doesn’t really understand it
- Campaigns developed where the outputs are completely out of sync with the actual key audiences, as well as the culture and values of the society in which they’re operating
- Campaigns which fail to have the desired impact
- Cultures within teams and organisations that inhibit nimble, creative and adaptive approaches, making the resulting campaigns less successful
Can you help us plan an actual campaign using the Campaign Accelerator process?
Yes! We can host a Campaign Accelerator workshop to support your team in delivering an actionable project plan around an issue. Learn more here.
Meet the Trainers
Check out the full collection of Campaign Accelerator resources for instructions, facilitation tips and printable templates for each module of the Campaign Accelerator planning process. An experienced facilitator should be able to run most of the exercises. Many are fairly straightforward, but leading a full process does require practice.
The Campaign Accelerator has been used successfully by organisations across the world. Here are three of those stories:
- Amnesty International used the Accelerator for a set of campaigns in four different countries combating gender-based violence
- UNICEF has used the Accelerator as the foundation of a series of volunteer program planning workshops across the world
- In 2016, Greenpeace Mexico participated in Campaign Accelerator. We caught up with the team in early 2018 to learn how the process affected their work (in English and Spanish).
When changing laws isn’t enough
How Amnesty International designed culture-shifting campaigns to end sexual violence in four very different contexts using the Campaign Accelerator.
A big step for UNICEF: inviting volunteers to scale the mission
How a small team inside a giant UN agency is popularising people-power and getting results
Taking on Bimbo with a new approach: A Campaign Accelerator case study
Greenpeace Mexico used Campaign Accelerator in 2016 to test creative strategies aimed at pushing the multinational grocery and baking company towards being a leader in sustainable agriculture.
Any questions? Just drop us a line on firstname.lastname@example.org.