How The Beacon Center of Tennessee Raised the Flag on Corporate Handouts
|Poll a representative sample of the Tennessee population||Generated earned media coverage||Galvanized grassroots support for legislative priorities|
Beacon Center Seeks Media Spotlight on Issue Priorities
Corporate handouts are widely debated across the political spectrum. Proponents advocate that they spur economic growth and job opportunities, while opponents believe that favoritism to larger companies hurts small businesses.
In Tennessee, the Beacon Center is addressing this issue head-on. Their mission is to push “public policy at the local and state level for advancing the principles of free markets, individual liberty and limited government.”
To boost their educational efforts, they wanted a cost- efficient way to accurately measure the sentiment of Tennessee voters on “corporate handouts.”
icitizen Polling Services Gauges Public Opinion
Armed with hard data to back their educational efforts, the Beacon Center achieved:
|Press coverage throughout the state||10+ media hits in major state publications, like The Tennessean and Knoxville News Sentinel||Creation of a new watchdog website dedicated to government transparency on corporate handouts|
icitizen provided the polling services needed to generate earned media for the Beacon Center’s educational efforts. Questions were designed to quantify sentiment on whether Tennessean registered voters believe the state government:
- Is transparent with the incentives it provides to corporations
- Should give tax dollars to certain businesses in the form of handouts
- Is prioritizing effective spending of tax dollars…and other related questions
The statewide omnibus poll was conducted among 562 registered Tennessee voters, age 18 and older from May 12-16, 2016. The survey results were weighted to the U.S. Census benchmarks, providing a more representative view of public opinion.
Civic Tech Lowers Barriers to Data-Driven Grassroots
Once the traditional barriers to representative polling are removed – high costs, slow poll turnaround, limited ability to target beyond the national level – grassroots organizations like the Beacon Center of Tennessee easily spread awareness for their cause.
Poll results showed that 72% of Tennesseans agreed with the statement, “State government is not transparent with the incentives it provides to corporations,” and 69% disagree with the statement, “State government should give your tax dollars to certain businesses in the form of handouts.”
The main takeaway from their research objective – and what ultimately sparked all the media attention – was the need for greater transparency in the way that government works with businesses through the tax code.
“icitizen was absolutely incredible to work with. Their expertise and accuracy in polling allowed us to get the real results that we used to bring attention to the issue of corporate handouts.”
Mark Cunningham, Director of Marketing and Communications
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