Much like the Olympics, managing an advocacy program takes a substantial amount of time, training, and strategy to make your organization stand out from the rest. As your organization’s advocacy program scales, use these advocacy strategy examples to take your efforts from the junior leagues to Olympic-level precision, mobilizing your advocate base with the same fervor and energy as a crowd of spectators.
In the spirit of the Olympics, here are medal-worthy advocacy strategy examples that you can take inspiration from to mobilize, grow, and delight your advocacy base:
Advocacy Strategy Examples
Use Multiple Channels to Expand Your Advocacy’s Reach
Have Advocates Log Interactions at Your Next Lobby Day
Run a Thank and Shame Campaign
Take a Data-Driven Approach to Re-Engage Existing Advocates
Mobilize Your Advocates with Grassroots Texting
Use Social Media to Proactively Engage Legislators Online
Gamify Your Advocacy Program to Incentivize Return Participation
Run a multi-channel digital advocacy campaign to blast your organization’s messaging across all digital mediums. You can use a multi-channel digital campaign to target specific audiences – be it digital users, or demographics, like generations, you want to acquire in your advocate base.
Below are some common digital channel mediums you can incorporate into your next digital advocacy campaigns and the benefits for each one:
Podcasts: Podcast audiences have significant interest in the topics or hosts of the podcasts they subscribe to. Advertising on podcasts relevant to your organization’s cause allows you to reach a highly qualified audience of potential advocates.
Texting:Inbound texting (where advocates text you to take action) gives advocates an avenue to contact you and directly get involved. Outbound texting (where you text a list of advocates) allows you to quickly activate advocates with actions they can take now. Texting works well when action is urgently and quickly needed, putting your message at the top of an advocate’s message feed to remain top-of-mind.
Social Media: This channel lets advocates take quick action and can help get your organization’s messaging trending through planned tweet storms using your hashtags. It is an easy way for advocates to take action and allows you to engage with your base without geographic boundaries or schedules getting in the way.
Email: This digital medium allows you to engage advocates with longer-form storytelling. Emails can be extremely effective in running storytelling campaigns that can motivate advocates to participate more with your organization.
Combining these channels in one campaign means you can maximize your advocacy reach. For example, include an inbound grassroots texting number in a podcast campaign to have new advocates text you to opt-in to take action. This example invites a targeted, highly qualified audience to take up your cause.
Lobby days, also known as fly-ins, allow advocates to connect with their elected officials, communicate your legislative priorities, and collect valuable feedback from a legislator about your issues.
To gather this intel, have your advocates log their meetings in Quorum as soon as they leave a legislator’s office. Make your interaction logger easily accessible for your advocates by including it in the lobby day resources you distribute to your participants. By uploading this intel digitally, your government affairs team can rapidly follow up with legislators to answer any questions or schedule a meeting to discuss next steps and continue the conversation past your day of action.
A thank and shame campaign is an advocacy strategy example where you modify your communications strategy to legislators based on their positions on a given piece of legislation.
Use “thank” messaging in emails or social media posts to praise supportive legislators that sign on to cosponsor key legislation. Use “shame” based messaging to condemn legislators who are not yet co-sponsors to confront them on their lack of support.
Thanking supportive elected officials can help strengthen and develop key legislative relationships and solidify your organization as experts on specific policy issues. A shame-based communications advocacy strategy can prompt a neutral legislator to publicly announce their stance on legislation or policy issue areas due to mounting public pressure — especially if the shame-based messages are coming directly from constituents.
An effective thank and shame messaging campaign auto-updates. You don’t want to “shame” an elected official after they sign on to co-sponsor or make a statement of support for your stance. Conversely, you wouldn’t want to thank a legislator that has yet to take action. Use a system like Quorum to make sure you send the right messages to the right people — with voting records integrated in the same system as advocacy campaigns, your campaign will auto-update as new sponsors sign-on.
Tracking advocate activity levels helps you build out tiered lists of advocates based on activity levels. This tiered list allows you to better segment your messaging and campaigns. This way, you can focus your efforts on re-engaging with your advocates based on where they fall in your tiered list.
For advocates with the lowest levels of participation, include resources in your communications that inspire and energize them to take action. Focus on updates to key legislation that teaches why they should engage with their elected officials.
For advocates with steady levels of activity, incentivize increased participation with a reward for advocates that ramp up the number of actions taken in a given time period. Gamifying your advocacy campaigns can be the final push an advocate needs to take their participation to the next level and allows you to reward their dedication to your organization’s cause.
Use Quorum Outbox to send personalized messages to each segmented list of advocates based on participation level. This will help you better refine your messaging and audience to help you re-engage them and boost participation.
This advocacy strategy example helps you engage and expand your advocate base. Use inbound texting — where advocates text a code you’ve set up to join your cause — to acquire new advocates fired up about your organization’s cause. Advocates sign up to join your advocate database, helping you grow your list of advocate contacts. Use outbound texting — where you text your existing list of advocates— to mobilize your base to take action. A steady mixture of both inbound and outbound texting helps you simultaneously expand and engage with your base.
The key to engaging legislators on social media is to not only make asks of lawmakers but also positively contribute to the conversation. Legislators often use their social media accounts to communicate policy positions to constituents and to share and engage with constituent stories. You can contribute to these conversations by having your advocates share their stories and tag their legislators, live-tweeting fly-ins, and thanking legislators for their time.
The strategy behind this example is to use social media to actively engage with legislators using advocacy messaging that is helpful to lawmakers. The more relevant and helpful, the higher your chances are for getting a response, a retweet, or a like. An online interaction with legislators doesn’t replace face-to-face time but simply enhances and deepens your existing relationships and familiarizes them with your advocacy efforts.
Implement gamification to your advocacy program so you can strategically track advocate activity levels and reward their continued participation. Adding gamification to your advocacy program with levels, points, and rewards helps make your advocacy program more fun and colorful, allowing you to surprise and delight your advocacy base.
Use gamification to identify your grasstops advocates by seeing who has earned the most points or reached the highest levels in your advocacy program. You can then make more advanced asks of your grasstops advocates like inviting them to a fly-in or meeting with their legislators on behalf of your organization.
With these advocacy strategy examples, you can train up your advocacy program to gold medal standards.
Use our template to create your own advocacy strategy in six easy steps