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Talk Radio Tips and Tools from the Bush Campaign

Here is an amazing little tool that good people should co-opt.

1. Develop your daily talking points (post them on a blog)
2. Add a link to the Bush radio from your blog http://www.georgewbush.com/GetActive/CallTalkRadio.aspx?zip=20005 Replace the zip at the end with your local target zip. (Or just cut and paste the content to your local site.)
3. Check the Bush site for radio contact information (or become a GMT member).
4. Build your own talk show strategy.

Why do you need to talk to a few thousand conservatives? Are they your target audience? What message are you putting in front of them? Will your message change behavior of these conservatives? How are the conservative callers going to "spin" your call after you are gone? Is it still worth the effort?

Remember talk shows and talk show strategies are not about callers ..who cares if 50 callers hate your message ... or flame your lines when you appear on radio ..talk show strategy is about moving messages to the listeners (most never call).

The interesting thing about the Bush site is that they know the audience. They are psyching each other up for the game. Talk radio is the locker room pep speech for the right. We all know that the GOP is a master of the talk radio channels but it is kind of cool to see the tools and the decentralized approach encouraging folks go off in a sounding chamber. (They are not using talk radio to win converts but to reinforce the message out to the base.)

It is good radio and it is really good practice to call shows once a month.

Do you ever debate with truck drivers? (I used to drive a lot of hours as a circulation driver for a paper in rural PA and lots of miles zipping around GA to save rivers) The conservative truck drivers sound like spin men for the GOP. It is because they are coached in a sort of mobile madras. Day after day of 12 hour shifts listening to the same spin on the same message from hundreds of ditto heads.

It is worth looking at and thinking about who is your target audience? What do your core supporters believe about your issues? How are you reinforcing that message on a consistent basis?

As promised, here are the Bush Tips (includes everything but how to dial)

Tips for Calling Talk Radio Call Early: Call early in the show so you can be sure to be included in the program.

Keep Calling: If the call-in line is busy, just keep redialing the number. You will get through, especially on a local program.

Plan What You Are Going to Say: Print or write out your talking points to help you plan what you are going to say before you are on the air.

Know the Single Point You Want to Make:

Be Clear and Concise:

It is safe to assume that the White House (or surrogate) has called the radio stations in most markets to bolster your chances of not getting cut off with conservative boobspeak. (However, if you are calling to ask questions about WMD, Mercury in the air, jobless economy expect to be censured.) Remember they control everything so don't expect to make any debate points. Small market radio talkjocks will often hang up, change subjects or make up (or quote others') lies after you are off the air to refute your point of view.


If you can get through, testing a conservative message can be lots of fun on radio. Often your own core values and beliefs can really resonate with talk listeners. Talk about a specific dishonest industry or industry tycoon and bridge conversation to enforcement issues. Talk about the unresponsive government staff (ignoring home owner input) that ignore the public then go work for the very industry they were supposed to regulate. Talk about the other failures of the free market (inappropriate government intervention is only one) focus on the impact of externalities on price and health of the economic system.

Talk about your spiritual connections to environmental work (feel free to invoke St. Francis, St. Martin, the Pope or pull anything from the Interfaith-Coalition-for-the-Environment site . Talk about the facts that you are an environmentalist that you volunteer in your community, pay taxes, care for your kids and your neighbors. Talk about the horror stories that inspire your anger (asthma, lead, communities that live with GE's PCBs while GE shareholders take huge dividend checks) and make fun of the shrill divisive way that radio typically portrays environmentalist. Ask them if they trust corporations (Enron, Boeing) with the health of the community or local volunteers that rally to protect a special place.

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