The Future of Advocacy
The advent of the Internet changed the economics of advocacy, and citizen engagement has been dramatically transformed ever since. Without the burdening costs of postage stamps and paper, associations, nonprofits, and companies have virtually unlimited capacity to bombard Congress with messages. However, the sheer volume of messages from constituents has overwhelmed Capitol Hill, which has seen its own staff shrink more the 15 percent in the last few decades. As a result, mass email campaigns no longer have the power to influence Congressional decisions.
So if email campaigns are no longer effective advocacy strategy, what does work? The Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) has been the leading research organization on citizen engagement for nearly two decades. Through exclusive surveys, focus groups, and interviews of congressional staff, CMF has identified emerging strategies to influence legislative outcomes. This presentation will assess those strategies, including examples of successful interactions between associations, nonprofits and elected officials, and explore the following questions.
* Who do Congress listen to in an over-communicated world?
* What congressional staffers believe are the most effective communications tactics for influencing undecided Members of Congress?
* How “grasstops” advocates can be trained to influence Congress?
* How groups can use social media to impact legislative outcomes?
The webinar will be conducted by Bradford Fitch, President and CEO of CMF, and Seth Turner, Director of Citizen Engagement.