Advocacy Versus Lobbying


Two professionals who are in lobbying are working in an office

Even though a lot of the time lobbying and advocating can work hand in hand, there are still key differences that make them separate. Therefore, it is important to understand what advocating means, what lobbying is, and how they differ from each other.

What is Advocacy?

In simple terms, advocacy means the backing and support of any sort of cause, idea, or legislation. This can be done through public campaigns educating individuals on a certain topic, sharing positive outcomes of specific issues, and the overall recommendation of issues that will be affecting certain individuals and the community around them.

What is Lobbying?

Lobbying on the other hand can be defined as the act of influencing politicians, public officials, and key policymakers in favor or against certain legislation. Not only that but it can also be broken down into two further categories.

Direct: This is what most people think of when discussing lobbying activities, having communication with policymakers in hopes for them to vote against or in favor of particular legislation.

Grassroots: This means enticing the public to contact public officials in hopes of influencing key policymakers. 

Advocacy Vs. Lobbying Examples

Here are some common examples to help distinguish between advocacy and lobbying.


  • Educating members of the public or politicians why a certain cause is important for the community.
  • Using social media to voice your opinion on specific issues.


  • Asking a member of congress to vote for or against a particular piece of legislation.
  • Using social media to ask members of the public to contact their elected officials to pass or deny current or pending legislation.

Dorn Policy Will Advocate For You

As a leading Arizona-based professional lobbying and public affairs firm, Dorn Policy Group works with all levels of government including Federal, State, county, municipal, district, and Tribal government entities. Working with both Republicans and Democrats as well as Independents, we will provide you with the best strategic counsel to advance and reach your objectives. Contact us today to get started!

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