[Advocacy campaigns today require a digital strategy. Learn how Megaphone by Bloomberg Government provides a comprehensive set of tools for grassroots advocacy professionals to make the most of their campaigns.]
Today, the world of grassroots advocacy is much larger and far noisier than ever before. No longer is the field dominated by non-profit organizations; now, large enterprises are going beyond conventional lobbying tactics or direct relationships with state legislators by leveraging grassroots advocacy to achieve their legislative priorities.
The strategies behind grassroots advocacy efforts are also changing. While traditional tactics like door-to-door canvassing, direct mail and phone campaigns are still essential, new methods involving the advent of digital organizing are continually evolving. For instance, the rise of social media has opened boundless opportunities to raise awareness on public policy issues, drive advocate engagement and inform public opinion.
But with all of the competition and commotion in the market, the true challenge of a grassroots advocacy campaign is developing strategic communications that target the right audience at the right time.
What is grassroots advocacy?
Grassroots advocacy is the process of communicating with and organizing the general public to achieve policy goals. Instead of relying on lobbyists to meet directly with members of Congress, a grassroots campaign spurs constituents into action by having them put pressure on policymakers to enact change. That means asking supporters and volunteers to contact the relevant legislator or other elected official on the local, state or federal level, depending on the issue.
While lobbying can be an effective strategy, there are three primary benefits to grassroots advocacy:
Strength in numbers. Individual lobbyists do not hold the same power over members of Congress as a large group of constituents.
Person-to-person. Lawmakers are often swayed by personal anecdotes, stories, or evidence presented by individual advocates.
Securing voters. Most of the time, advocates are also registered voters, meaning their opinions can hold a lot of weight with their elected officials.
Creating an effective grassroots campaign
While government affairs professionals, lobbyists, and other means of developing direct government relations are still valuable tools for influencing public policy, they are incomplete without effective grassroots advocacy. And the success of any campaign depends on one major factor: data.
To build a strong campaign that achieves policy goals, grassroots advocacy professionals need a way to track and analyze as many advocate data points as possible. Collecting this breadth of data allows organizations to create precise, targeted campaigns that put the right message in front of the right audience at the perfect time. However, it’s no simple feat.
Organizations need a powerful solution that makes building and executing effective campaigns fast and simple.
Megaphone, from Bloomberg Government, is one of the most sophisticated yet easy-to-use grassroots advocacy software on the market. With a 360-degree view of constituents and engagement levels, grassroots advocacy professionals can easily find the data they need to strategize their campaigns. As a fully integrated, centralized platform, Megaphone enables organizations to make data-driven decisions on who to engage and how, creating the optimal tactics for maximum impact.
Megaphone also provides a dynamic, quantitative measure of advocate engagement, influence, and the civic health of constituents. Gain valuable insights on things like voter propensity, election engagement, and the likelihood of joining your group of volunteers. That way, you know where to send an action alert to mobilize the right constituents for your initiatives.
Don’t miss your moment to build your movement
Only Megaphone by Bloomberg Government combines everything you need to reach your audience into one easy-to-use advocacy software.
In recent years, there’s been an explosion in the number of solutions geared toward grassroots advocacy campaigns. These apps and software tools can be broken down into two basic categories:
All-in-one platforms offer comprehensive features to support organizations as they plan, execute, and measure their advocacy campaign.
Point solutions provide a specific feature set to assist organizations in a single function of their advocacy campaign.
But many of the tools on the market, including “all-in-one” solutions, have limited capabilities and offer underwhelming advocate insights. Grassroots advocacy professionals need more than just names and zip codes. They need in-depth data, the support to develop actionable plans, and seamless integration capabilities for disparate systems.
Bloomberg Government’s Megaphone is a truly all-in-one platform that provides the core tools you need to drive effective advocate engagement, including:
Advanced CRM and data management capabilities.
A sophisticated query tool with list segmentation.
Detailed tracking on comprehensive constituent profiles.
A drag-and-drop form builder.
Seamless third-party integrations.
Megaphone is the only advocacy software to offer supporter-centric outreach tools that unlock the true potential of your advocacy campaign.
Measuring campaign efficacy
Simply collecting data isn’t enough for a successful campaign; it’s how you analyze and learn from it. Megaphone provides comprehensive visibility into your constituent engagement with the ability to quickly gauge success and change course if needed.
Organize charts, goal tracking, task lists and more into custom dashboards on Megaphone.
Tracking codes allow you to build in-depth profiles and track interactions with supporters to collect data on interests, political affiliation, voting history, and any number of custom attributes. You can also monitor engagement levels to determine which supporters are most likely to take action.
Megaphone’s proprietary Civic Health Score allows you to measure your audience’s civic engagement levels using first- and third-party data, including donations to causes and campaigns, volunteering, and other information. Then, set campaign goals and develop visuals to track your overall progress.
Create customizable charts based on the activity and data of supporters. Organize this information in a configurable dashboard with goal tracking, task lists, analytics, and more. That way, you can monitor performance and adjust tactics to stay ahead of internal benchmarks.
Reliable data to pinpoint, activate, and build momentum
Megaphone’s clean and updated data lets you refine your efforts – giving your campaign the precision to perform.
One of the key benefits of Megaphone’s robust, all-in-one platform is its data-driven insights on strategic communications. With detailed tracking capabilities and multiple options for advocate interactions, Megaphone makes it easy to learn and adapt to audience preferences, allowing you to fine-tune your message to impact the right people at the perfect opportunity.
Megaphone offers the most in-depth profiles on constituents than any other platform, with data collected on interests, political affiliation, voting history, and custom attributes.
Online and offline forms
Creating online forms has never been simpler with Megaphone’s drag-and-drop form builder. Set up custom web forms that collect all the relevant data you need, and send autoresponders to those who complete them to drive further engagement while you have their attention.
Use Megaphone’s drag-and-drop form builder to set up custom webforms that can be embedded on your website or hosted in a custom landing page.
You can embed these forms on your website or host them on a custom landing page. Or, create custom forms for gathering information offline, including email acquisition, petitions, quizzes, registration forms, and more.
Once you have your supporters’ email addresses, you’ll want to keep them updated on the campaign with action alerts. Send one-time emails to custom audiences, or schedule messages in advance.
The email automation tool uses artificial intelligence and data-driven insights to ensure your message is well-crafted to reach the right audience at the right time. As a result, more people interact with your campaign, ultimately generating a higher engagement rate.
Peer-to-peer SMS and phone banking
Megaphone is the only advocacy toolset with constituent-centric SMS and call features, letting you put the power of mobilizing supporters in the hands of your constituents.
Send text messages directly to supporters, or empower them to text each other. Then, respond to supporters from a centralized inbox. Finally, use customizable reports to measure SMS performance in a single dashboard.
Built-in phone banking enables your organization or volunteers to call and inform your target audiences about issues and encourage them to take action. Equip your volunteers with custom scripts and build questionnaires that capture information, delivering it directly into that person’s CRM profile.
Already using advocacy software?
Switching to Megaphone couldn’t be easier. We make it simple to transfer data, save historical information on audiences, and even connect with third-party tools. Megaphone offers an open API that enables convenient integrations and data flow between various systems.
Migrate existing data with automatic file standardization for seamless transfers. Connect with third-party systems like Mailchimp, EventBrite, Facebook lead ads, WordPress, Hustle, and much more. You can also build custom integrations with your external platforms to deliver efficient data flow across your critical systems.