Challenge: In 2008, partisan gridlock in Congress had the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) facing an uphill climb in its effort to win a long-term extension of the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) – considered the most significant solar federal policy ever enacted.
Solution: We planned and executed an aggressive, year-long communications program to secure on-message attention nationally and in congressionally-important states. To help SEIA win, we:
- Helped them successfully message the ITC as a cost-effective policy for taxpayers that created a stable investment environment for an industry creating jobs all over the country.
- Ran a comprehensive reporter and editorial board outreach program that focused on hundreds of national, regional, trade and online media outlets consumed by targeted federal policy makers and their tax and energy policy staff members. This included working with The New York Times Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Thomas Friedman.
- Trained and staffed SEIA board members for two different DC media tours to drive home to lawmakers the real-world benefits of the ITC and its high return to taxpayers.
President Bush signed an eight-year ITC extension after a grueling, year-long effort that saw 17 different votes in Congress before succeeding.
- We secured 96 news stories and editorials, including five pro-ITC editorials in The New York Times.
- We placed Letters to the Editor in The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal.
- We generated targeted news attention from important regional outlets like the Arizona Republic, Cleveland Plain Dealer and Las Vegas Review-Journal.