Blog & Podcast

Daniel T. Richards, The Federalist Society

This week Cord interviewed Daniel T. Richards, the Vice President & Director of Digital at The Federalist Society. Cord & Daniel discussed three FedSoc projects: the SCOTUS Brief video series, the “No. 86” educational project, and the National Lawyers Convention.


  • Changing style, rather than content, to increase engagement and get viewers to watch a video all the way through
  • Managing a video release schedule and consulting with subject matter experts on content creation
  • How FedSoc measures the success of this video project
  • How-to use targeting in ads, including geotargeting ads at 150 law schools, to focus on your core audience

No. 86

  • Why create an online educational series?
  • How FedSoc uses student chapters and direct outreach to professors, even hostile professors, to promote courses
  • Planning a project of this size and selecting the next courses to create
  • Creating a release schedule that maximizes organic reach
  • Using internal producers along with subcontractors like Phaedo Creative to create the videos themselves

National Lawyers Convention

  • What do marketers do when a conference is already hugely successful?
  • Making a conference beautiful and emotionally engaging
  • The importance of high-quality photography and hiring a professional photographer
  • Using lighting, backdrops, and 4k video to make an event video look great
  • Livestreaming and why FedSoc abandoned the idea of putting event videos behind a paywall
  • How to use simple things like hashtags to promote an event
  • Using “tweetboards” or a hashtag printer to get event attendees excited about sharing
  • Using a photo backdrop to create your own red-carpet-style photo ops
  • Scheduling interviews with event attendees
  • Getting footage of attendees talking about your events, talking about issues, talking about your organization so you can update a general about your org video, update fundraising videos, or use in future video projects
  • Using Airtable and Zapier to keep everything on-track

If you work in the Washington, DC area, contact Daniel via email or on Twitter to RSVP for the next FedSoc rooftop marketing meetup.

Please remember to rate and review this show on Apple Podcasts, follow Tallest Tree Digital on Twitter, like our page on Facebook, and share this show with other public policy marketing and communications professionals like you.

Todd Myers, Washington Policy Center

This week Cord interviewed Todd Myers, Director of the Center for the Environment at Washington Policy Center. He is one of the nation’s leading experts on free-market environmental policy and the author of Eco-Fads: How the Rise of Trendy Environmentalism Is Harming the Environment.

Cord & Todd talked about:

  • How to establish trust when working on a fraught issue
  • Overcoming biases
  • Working in a policy area that’s not easily quantified
  • Using smartphones to solve coordinated action problems
  • Find the right venue or audience for the issue you’re addressing
  • Making a frenemy into an ambassador
  • Challenging claims about your motivations
  • When to use consultants
  • Finding success on Facebook
  • The importance of experimentation
  • Working with unlikely allies
  • Hosting a policy nature hike
  • Holding a debate instead of a one-side forum

Todd’s book recommendation was Brian Caplan’s The Myth of the Rational Voter.

Please remember to rate and review this show on Apple Podcasts, follow Tallest Tree Digital on Twitter, like our page on Facebook, and share this show with other public policy marketing and communications professionals.

Whitney Munro, Foundation for Government Accountability

This week Cord interviewed Whitney Munro of the Foundation for Government Accountability. Whitney and Cord covered a lot of topics, including:

  • Micro-targeting state legislators
  • Message testing with real voters
  • Building profiles of website visitors/email readers
  • How to pronounce “Pardot”
  • Collecting feedback from your target audience
  • Telling human stories about policy
  • Choosing software platforms based on what they can deliver, rather than something that is “built for non-profits”
  • Adopting successful business strategies
  • Auditing campaigns
  • The importance of letting go of bad ideas on moving on
  • Why the Institute for Justice and the Atlas Network are killing it right now

Please remember to rate and review this show on Apple Podcasts, follow Tallest Tree Digital on Twitter, like our page on Facebook, and share this show with other public policy marketing and communications professionals like you.

Rob Montz, We the Internet TV

Rob Montz is a fellow at the Moving Picture Institute, a director at We the Internet TV, and co-founder and CEO of Good Kid Productions. His work has been featured in the New York Times, BBC World News, the Economist, USA Today, and The Washington Post. His documentary works have covered topics including free speech on college campuses, the North Korean regime, criminal justice reform, and the virtues of entrepreneurship.

Rob talked to Cord about his most recent documentary is entitled “Trump as Destiny: Why the Reality Show Presidency Was Inevitable.”

Scott Barton, Pacific Legal Foundation

Scott Barton is a nonprofit leader focused on digital communications, strategy, persuasion, and building entrepreneurial teams, which makes him a perfect guest for our show.

While working at the Institute for Humane Studies, a university-based nonprofit, Scott co-founded and directed the Learn Liberty project, a digital education platform to promote the ideas of free markets and individual liberty to college students. Scott helped Learn Liberty build an impressive library of over 400 videos with over 25 million views.

Scott has recently taken his talents to a new home, the Pacific Legal Foundation, where he serves as the Director of Communications and Outreach. Scott talked to Cord about how organizations can tell persuasive stories about their ideas, mission, and work.

The Three Languages of Politics

This great interview is part of the incomparable EconTalk series from Russ Roberts, of Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. In this episode, Roberts interviews Arnold Kling, author of The Three Languages of Politics, about why human beings so often talk past one another when discussing politics and policy.

Kling posits that conservatives, progressives, and libertarians plot things along three different axis, civilization/barbarism, oppressor/oppressed, and freedom/coercion respectively.

It’s because of these three different ways of analyzing or evaluating issues that that three camps in American politics don’t see eye-to-eye. It’s not that they disagree on whether something is a problem, it’s that they don’t even speak the same language about problems and solutions.

Tallest Tree believes in approaching the marketing or selling or ideas in a problem-oriented way, so this insight is significant. If a given policy is solving a lack-of-freedom problem, but creating a too-little-civilization problem or a too-much-oppression problem, or is at least perceived to be causing those, then the problem-solving approach is only going to win over one of those three camps.

Listening to this podcast, and reading Kling’s book, is a must for anyone interesting in creating coalitions of more than one of the three political ideologies that Kling discusses.