Launched in July 2011, the Partnership to Fuel America (initiated by the Institute for 21st Century Energy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce) was a coalition of U.S. businesses, industries and interests that recognized the importance of securing a diverse supply of North American energy, including oil and natural gas, from stable and reliable sources. The Partnership promoted the benefits of a wide range of energy projects, including the TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline System, for creating thousands of jobs that strongly benefit U.S. energy security and our national economy.
The Partnership tasked 720 Strategies with developing a localized base of support made up of business, civic and legislative allies who could speak directly to the importance of securing America’s energy and economic future in terms of jobs creation, tax revenue generated for local communities and spurring regional and national economic growth. We engaged field operatives in targeted congressional districts in key states to identify, recruit and mobilize credible, impacted voices, including state chambers of commerce, state economic development authorities, state associations and businesses, agriculture-based groups, land use organizations and elected officials at the federal and state levels.
The campaign recruited more than 250 partners and supporters to join the coalition. Recruited coalition members were asked for public use of their organization’s name in campaign advertising, printed collateral materials and other campaign activities, as well as in signing joint letters to targeted congressional leaders, administration officials and other legislative targets. Through coalition-member activity, the campaign also generated speakers bureau events to spread campaign messaging throughout targeted communities.
The campaign also developed messaging for the Partnership to Fuel America’s website, www.FuelingUs.org, which provides key campaign message points, links to up-to-the-minute campaign news through an RSS feed and additional resources to promote the efforts of the campaign and the importance of the KXL.
A central component of the campaign was generating local earned media support – from opinion editorials and letters to the editor, to drive-time talk radio, local television and public affairs shows – targeting key media outlets that are known to be monitored by targeted legislators.
The campaign generated more than 500 media hits, including a national story appearing on MSNBC and local network affiliates focusing on launch of the campaign, as well as dozens of news stories in state and local outlets, ranging from the Billings Gazette and the Bismarck Tribune, to the Omaha World Herald and Detroit News, to Minnesota Public Radio and Prairie Public Radio programs. We also secured numerous opinion editorials and letters to the editor generated by coalition partners, many of which appeared in newspapers, both online and in print, throughout the country.
Print ads designed for the campaign ran nationally in a variety of publications, including the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Barrons and USA Today (Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, DC); as well as in “beltway” print media, including Roll Call, Politico, The Hill, National Journal, National Journal Daily, Weekly Standard and The Examiner. Our ads recently received national attention while being featured in several Fox News stories, including “White House Punting on Keystone XL Pipeline?” and “Obama’s Keystone Pipeline Decision to Benefit China?”