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Get out there and talk, business told

AAP logoAAP 6/12/2016

The numbers say it all: anti-enterprise groups can claim 200,000 followers even without unions while pro-business groups struggle to attract more than a tenth of that figure.

Little wonder then that the The Liberal Party-aligned Menzies Research Centre is calling for reform of the business lobby strategy.

It suggests the lobby is being outgunned by unions and left-of-centre think tanks when it comes to influencing policy development and debate.

"You have to be prepared to campaign, you have to talk to the commentariat, you need to be in the living rooms and you need to be at the grassroots levels as well," the institute's Andrew Bragg told ABC radio.

A research paper, the institute is releasing on Tuesday, urges the business lobby to counter successful grassroots campaigns from GetUp and also to address social media imbalances.

"A sophisticated anti-enterprise bunch of think tanks, unions, single issue and community campaigns leave no stone unturned arguing against business policy," Mr Bragg said.

Think tanks and single-issue groups focus on the commentariat and media while GetUp and unions penetrate the grassroots level, he said.

Senior Liberal figures and coalition supporters criticised organisations such as the Business Council of Australia for staying on the sidelines during the July election campaign.

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