Campaigning on an issue

Many branch activists are experienced in running campaigns on both local and national issues, but it’s always useful to review our approach, so here are a few basic tips.


Objectives are the focus for any campaign. Everything else is built around these objectives and they make it possible to review how successful (or not) a campaign has been and whether we achieved what we wanted to.


Creating a flexible plan with a timetable and with identified responsibilities means that everyone is aware of the intended progress of the campaign and can prepare for events.

Who does the planning?

It’s up to the branch activists and committee to agree to a campaign plan. Forming a sub-committee or working party to focus primarily on drawing up the plan may help. They can then take it to the rest of the branch for discussion and agreement.

Getting the message across

You need to think about who your target audience is and what you want to tell them. There are many ways to spread a message, including press releases, briefings for activists and members, newsletters, workplace meetings and social media such as Facebook and Twitter.

You can use customised UNISON materials to help with your campaign. These can be produced via our online print system.

Find out more about our online print service.

Recruitment is important

A well-planned and high-profile campaign shows that UNISON is worth joining and shows members that their concerns are being addressed.


Reviewing is vital – it’s how we learn.

Think about how you might review activities. For instance: did you run a recruitment stall but nobody turned up? Where did you site it? What time was it there? How did you publicise it? Where did you publicise it?

Successes need to be shared with others. Get your rep to report it to your regional service group committee or the regional recruitment and organisation committee. And don’t forget to tell UNISON InFocus, our magazine for activists.