South Carolina REALTORS
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Challenge: A recent South Carolina law established property tax assessments at the time of sale---known as this “point of sale assessment.” The new law had devastating consequences for the entire state of South Carolina, and the real estate industry had to change the law. As part of their legislative objective, the South Carolina REALTORS ® needed to communicate with citizens to raise awareness and build grassroots support to change the point of sale law.
Solution: The South Carolina REALTORS® engaged Cornerstone to develop and execute a comprehensive communications plan to educate citizens, engage them in a conversation about the issue, and compel action. Our team conducted quantitative and qualitative research that showed the issue was too complicated on its face---and therefore the message needed to be simplified. We developed a messaging strategy around “fairness,” as most citizens believe the current law is clearly unfair. Our team then launched a statewide campaign integrating traditional and new media tactics to define the issue, and raise awareness. The issues campaign centered around an Internet site www.ItsJustNotFair.Org, and included direct mail, print ads, TV, radio, online advertising and social media engagement.
Result: After thousands of emails, phone calls and letters to legislators, and social media engagement, the fully integrated campaign helped the association's lobbying efforts to pass H 3713, and was signed into law in mid June of 2011 .