In any contest, whether it’s politics, sports, or even military conflict, the important thing to be cognizant of is where the campaign is at in terms of offense and defense in terms of “Time on Clock”. Now when I say offense, I’m not talking about being personally offense. I’m talking about the strategic positioning of the campaign with regard to the calendar for the election.
The idea of “Playing offense” is about being proactive with regard to messaging, building relationships, and promotion. The opposition will do the same thing. However, simply reacting to the oppositions messaging is playing defense. Ultimately, you want your opposition reacting to your campaign’s messaging… and often.
This is what I like to call “Managing time on clock.” The best example that I can give is sports. The idea for any team is to jump out front quickly and gain an early lead. Establish dominance. Then, toward the end of the game, the team that is leading will methodically do what it has to in order to keep control of the ball so that they can burn the remaining time off of the game clock, so that they can deny their opponents the opportunity to make a come back. It’s no different in politics. Do comebacks happen? Of course they do. I’ve been a part of some really great campaign comebacks. However, its much more comfortable to establish early dominance and grow the lead.
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