29 October 2014

The Reformation and Millennials: What Does This Mean? (Part 3)

This presentation was given at the Weld County Republican Breakfast on 29 October 2014, and has been modified slightly to make sense in this format (there are a lot more pictures in the linked PowerPoint).

Please read Part 1 and Part 2 first.

Messaging in Politics

I was at fundraising training at the Leadership Institute in Washington DC last month, and we talked a lot about communication, especially right vs. left brained communication.

Left Brain

  • Intelligence 
  • Logic 
  • Thinking 
  • Short term memory 
  • Conscious awareness 
  • Language reasoning 
  • Problem solving 

Right Brain

  • Motivation 
  • Creativity and intuition 
  • Feelings and emotions 
  • Long term memory 
  • Subconscious mind 
  • Music and jingles 
  • Suggestion
I often say that I am so far left brained, I can’t see right brained. I’m very process-oriented, math-oriented, and so not creative. And, honestly, this is the story with a lot of those right of center. But we have to remember that…
  • Voting is an a-rational act 
  • Right brain is the motivator, left brain is the rationalizer 
  • Conservatives appeal to the left brain… 
  • …but the seat of motivation is the right brain! 
  • The better you can communicate to the right brain, the more you will motivate someone to take action!

Messaging to Millennials


  • Don’t talk down. 
  • Don’t let them know that you know it all. 
  • Don’t pander. 
  • Don’t be inconsistent.  
  • Don’t be a hypocrite. 
Remember: Millennials are the first generation to grow up with microtargeted advertisement from a very young age – they know how to spot BS when they hear it.


  • Do be honest
  • Do be upfront
  • Do be concise – remember, these folks have an attention span of 140 characters.
  • Do appeal to both sides of the brain
  • Do stand your ground
  • Do realize you aren’t going to change someone’s opinion on the first contact or overnight
  • Do build credibility by building a relationship

How to Talk Social Issues

Here are some general ideas to remember when forming your plan to talk about social issues with the “Me” generation:

Do not start out by talking about religion – social issues are moral issues first, not necessarily faith issues. Millennials are the least religious generation in American History.

Ask questions first – and listen. You’ll surprise them. Millennials want to be heard and understood… like everyone else.

Understand that millennials’ education has been drastically more liberal than previous generations. You have to cut through all of that before you can get to the meat of the issue.

Understand that millennials are accustomed to instant gratification. If you can’t provide instantaneous results, they are going to be less interested.

Access to information is much more readily available to millennials than any other generation before. They can fact check, and probably in the palm of their hand, so be precise!

Be ready and willing to agree to disagree, and not argue minutia. Go in with the understanding that you will not come out with 100% agreement.

Follow up. Planting seeds now can reap significant fruits in 1, 5, or even 10 years.

Finally, this is the narcissistic generation. Convincing them that they are wrong is a long-term project. Be ready to invest some time in this endeavor.

Continued in Part 4.

Please note: all pictures were found via google image search, all I did was crop and add text.

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