Q&A with Wes Farno
Wes Farno, a Senior Consultant at Ascent, is a public affairs and issue advocacy expert. Under his direction, both public affairs and political campaigns have been successful in helping to elect numerous individuals and address legislative issues. Wes has worked on over 130 different issue advocacy campaigns ranging across all spectrums of public policy and political campaigns.
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I don’t remember what I wanted to be growing up. I also had a risk-taking spirit and a desire to control my destiny. I was never excited about working 9-5 for someone else.
How did you end up involved in politics?
When I was a junior in high school, I had an American History/Government teacher who realized that I was highly interested in the political process. He arranged for me to shadow a first-term State legislator named Jim Jordan. I followed him for the day, attended committee hearings, and learned the political process. From there, I got involved in his reelection campaign, doing what teenagers do. My myriad of involvement in the political arena all stems from that first job shadow.
Tell me your best political story or favorite political memory.
When I reflect on my political career, no single event stands out. All the people I have met through the years come to mind. I have been blessed to become friends with people that were a part of my life for a season and others who will be friends for a long time. Like most things in life, I see my involvement in the political process as a journey and relish its ups and downs.
How do you spend your free time?
I enjoy spending time with my wife, Angie. We enjoy attending sporting events and spending time with our close friends. Additionally, I appreciate non-fiction reading and biblical research.
What is the best concert you’ve attended?
I have attended hundreds of concerts. My favorite was Casting Crowns at Hobart Arena in 2009 or Zach Williams at the Fraze Pavilion in 2017.
Wes Farno: Campaigns and Public Affairs in the Information Age
Scientists have recently found that people process as much as 74 gigabytes daily. Putting that into perspective, it would have taken 103,000 – 3 ¼ inch floppy disks we used not too long ago to store all that information.
We live in an information overload society. It is never more evident than on the even-numbered years around Election Day. Our TVs are flooded with commercials portraying the virtues of one candidate over another. Or, more realistically, tearing one candidate down in the hopes of garnering support for themselves.
Most people understand the essential components of good campaigns – a quality candidate with the ability to garner financial support and the right tactics to deliver the candidate’s message. Candidates on all levels rely on direct mail, digital advertising, phone & text messages to get their message out. The candidates who hire professionals, like Ascent Strategic, to help build their strategy and execute the plan often outshine those that do not.
Amplify Public Affairs was launched to transfer those skills from people to policy. Public affairs tactics are necessary if you have any political objective. As with political candidates, it used to be that only the most prominent organizations and companies hired a government and public affairs firm because they knew developing successful public relations tactics was a complicated process. Today, trade groups, organizations, and companies of all sizes hire firms to help guide strategy and help raise their message above the rest.
The importance of public affairs cannot be overstated, as it plays a significant role in shaping the world around us. Our team of professionals works tirelessly to influence policymakers, ensuring that laws and regulations benefit their clients and the public. Utilizing tactics on the campaign trail, we can ensure that our client’s messages are front and center to their targeted audience.
For example, we recently worked with a client who desired to share their message with five members of a state general assembly. Through a coordinated text messaging program, we delivered nearly 100 contacts to each of the five targets, resulting in our client’s desired outcome.
A simple targeted text message rose above the onslaught of information and caught the attention of individuals processing 74GB of data daily. It was successful because it was coordinated, it was timely, and it delivered a message that resonated.
How can we Amplify your message and put your message in a position to rise above information overload?