The ACLU ordinarily publicizes particular cases it is working on rather than the organization itself, according to ACLU director of media relations John Kennedy. However, in this instance, the communications team decided that promotion of the national fundraising campaign would generate interest and enthusiasm by donors who might want to be part of a greater effort.
Rubenstein Communications provided strategic advice on messaging to promote the campaign to raise money for offices in Florida, Texas, New Mexico, Montana, Mississippi, Michigan, Missouri, and Tennessee. Citizens of these states, according to the ACLU, face serious threats to their civil liberties, but lack advocates.
Going forward, the campaign will seek to tell the story of donors in these particular states who, because of their past histories or personal beliefs, may help inspire others to donate money or otherwise get involved, Kennedy said.
For instance, a video recorded by a man in Colorado who donated his IRS stimulus check to the campaign has already been used by the organization to encourage additional donations.
"We will begin to develop strategies in the individual offices to communicate their growth," Kennedy added. "Some of the stories of these individual donors are quite compelling."
The AP was given the initial media exclusive on the campaign, which was formally announced at the ACLU's Stand Up For Freedom national membership conference, held June 8-10.