Organizations can influence federal, state, and local policies through their supporters’ collective voice. This is why associations must develop effective public policy strategies and grassroots advocacy.
To effectively prepare for the upcoming legislative session, an association should take the following steps:
An advocacy mission statement should be created
The mission statement should be aligned with the organization’s goals and passion. It should also reflect the organization’s purpose and how it plans to achieve its goals.
Have a comprehensive communications strategy
Your association may have a communications director or a one-person staff. With that in mind, how will you be able to effectively communicate with members during the legislative session?
Assign Individuals to handle advocacy responsibilities
This tip might be applicable if your organization doesn’t have a government affairs or policy specialist.
Your digital presence should also reflect the organization’s advocacy mission.
Social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter should be regularly updated. Videos and other visual content can also be used to educate and engage your supporters as the session draws closer.
Invest in software that allows you to manage your advocacy efforts
One of the most important factors you should consider when preparing for the upcoming legislative session is the availability of advocacy software. This tool can help you send targeted messages to your members.
Expand your network
New members should have a way to sign up for your action network. A strong base helps ensure that your efforts will succeed during the session.
Create a legislative timeline
A legislative timeline lets members know when certain bills will be taken up by committees and on the floor. It also helps staff members prepare whenever policy issues arise.
Be and active community member
You should also hold town hall meetings and other community events to inform members about the various initiatives of your organization. This will allow them to support your efforts and policies.
Set up lobby day
A lobby day is one of the most effective ways to bolster an association’s grassroots efforts. This event can be held in conjunction with the use of software that allows members to manage their advocacy efforts.
Budget your advocacy
Depending on your organization’s classification, it’s possible to spend up to a certain amount of money on advocacy. It’s also important to keep track of your expenditures.