Thursday, March 3, 2011

News from the Hill: New Study Stresses the Importance of Constituent Communications

It is no surprise that with technology advancements come additional ways to reach and influence legislators. But you might wonder just how effective your online messages are in advocating for the issues you care most about.

According to Communicating with Congress: Perceptions of Citizen Advocacy on Capitol Hill, a new study by the Partnership for a More Perfect Union at the Congressional Management Foundation, citizens have more power than they realize.

While traditional face-to-face interaction will never be beat, Capitol Hill offices report that the internet is a useful and effective way for constituents to relay information to their representatives. The study reveals, “What matters most is the content, not the vehicle”.

The most important thing to remember about communicating with Congress is that the most effective and impactful messages are ones that are personalized. Key pieces of information such as discussing the impact a bill will have on your state state or district, providing your reasons for supporting or opposing a bill, and including a relevant personal story will make your messages stand out.

Social media tools, such as Facebook and Twitter, are also becoming widely used methods of communication and Members of Congress are paying attention. Nearly two-thirds of Capitol Hill staff surveyed (64%) think Facebook is an important way to understand constituents’ views and nearly three-quarters (74%) think it is important for communicating their Members’ views.

1 comment:

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