December 20, 2016, by Erik Larson

Lobbying in a Trump Era - How to Win

With the election over and the start of a new legislative session just around the corner, there is broad speculation over the economic impact of the new Trump administration and Republican-controlled Congress. Job creation for American workers is at the forefront.

One thing we know for sure is the Trump administration and legislature will tend to favor industry. Whether your sector is construction, transportation, technology, or energy it is clear that there is opportunity abound in the shifting policy landscape. As a result the competition amongst lobbying interests will be fierce.

How do you create a winning strategy and differentiate your message?

5 policy areas of focus for 2017

  1. Tax Reform

    There are two categories of tax reform targeted in the Trump administration proposed plan, corporate and individual. The proposal would cut corporate tax from 35% to 15%, and the highest individual tax bracket from 39.6% to 33%.

    The idea here is to stimulate consumer spending and drive up GDP, and with it the need for more Americans in the workforce. How will your industry play into this narrative?

    What do the data show by industry and occupation set that you are advocating for?

  2. Trade Policy

    From the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Trump message is clear: the new focus will be to reduce America’s participation in these international trade agreements and to keep jobs in the U.S. as a result.

    For sectors such as manufacturing it is easy to see the net gain with this policy shift, but how will it impact financial services or technology?

    To win in federal or state lobbying you will need a strong narrative within this broader storyline.

  3. Infrastructure Investment

    The abundance of voice given to infrastructure investment by president-elect Trump ought to have investors’ ears perking up. Less focus has been given to the tax credit based approach specifically proposed, but there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that increased infrastructure spending will lead to opportunities for numerous industries.

    Is your association prepared to advocate for policy that aligns to your members’ needs? How can you be more strategic about your sector policy interests?

    Creativity and new ways of telling your story are needed in order to make your case for infrastructure investment in your sector, whether you are in technology, energy or transportation.

  4. Workforce for 21st Century

    Perhaps no policy arena is more critical than workforce development and training. Each sector, from construction to energy, has pent up workforce needs in order to prosper in the coming years.

    The unemployment rate is at its lowest point since the 2009 recession, and the Trump administration has inherited a unique opportunity to create new, livable wage U.S. jobs across nearly every sector. Investment in modern training, education and other workforce development initiatives will be needed.

    How will you make your case against the competing interests in other sectors?

  5. Loosening Regulations

    From the Clean Power Plan to the Dodd-Frank Act, we know that the general direction will be less regulating, more business. This can mean various things depending on your industry. For example, within energy, will the loosening of federal regulations on carbon emissions favor your members’ business or damage it? What is good for shale gas isn’t necessarily good for distributed energy resources, such as wind.

    Within each of the industry regulations are nuances that will impact your industry. How will you demonstrate that your impact matters?

Make your lobbying strategy a flywheel for growth.

The election was won on smart data strategy. You need a smart, data-driven lobbying strategy, or risk coming in second place on key issues. Fortunately, eImpact Report was purpose built to help you win.

Your industry. Your economic impact.