AT THE SPEED OF POLITICS BY JOHN QUARREY, FOUNDER, KROW (WORKING ON LABOUR’S ELECTION CAMPAIGN)
People reckon that retail is fast and that digital is faster, but neither has any chance of keeping up with politics during a snap election. As policies are developed, researched, refined and circulated, comms plans develop a life of their own: growing, mutating, sometimes dying but always changing. The polling and the research groups come thick and fast, shedding new light and opening new opportunities and often revealing uncomfortable truths.
The 24/7 news cycle makes some of the ideas redundant as you are having them and turns others into exciting possibilities while the social channels make everything possible sooner than you can get it done. A good example is our “This lady is for turning” video highlighting the flip-flop nature of Theresa May’s recent decision-making.
So it’s all happening quickly, which means the need for a strong organising thought (not just an annoying soundbite) is absolute. The idea that the Labour Party is for the many, not the few, is just that. The Labour comms team has used this to direct and inform all its decisionmaking. When the ideas and executions mutate, we all instinctively know which ones to keep and which ones to bin.
So it’s all been fast and furious and the team at Krow has learned a lot about stakeholder management and working within the news cycle. And we have become even more agile, somewhat thickerskinned and addicted to social media.