Citizens are engaging in issue advocacy and reaching out to their
lawmakers more than ever before, according to new research from
Phone2Action, a digital advocacy platform that connects citizens to
Released today, Phone2Action’s first State of Advocacy report reviewed
anonymized, aggregated data from hundreds of nonprofit organizations,
associations, and companies that use the Phone2Action platform,
examining how some of the most successful advocacy movements of the past
year were able to build momentum, transform passive supporters into
engaged advocates, and ultimately change policy on the local, state and
“By text, email, calls and social media, citizens are actively engaging
with their lawmakers at an unprecedented rate, sparking important
conversations and fully engaging in the democratic process,” said Jeb
Ory, Phone2Action CEO. “Lawmakers want – and need – to hear
constituents’ stories and opinions and the more we as an industry can do
to increase the efficiency of that communication, the better.”
The report focuses on insights and data points related to how digital
tools like Facebook, SMS campaigns and Twitter have impacted issue
advocacy in recent years.
Key findings include:
Advocacy engagement continues to rise. The total number of
interactions between advocates and decision-makers increased 36% in
2017 and 38% in 2018
Digital advocacy tools are helping boost the rate of advocate
acquisition. Out of all advocates acquired over the past three years,
40% of them were acquired in 2018, compared to 35% in 2017 and 25% in
Most organizations acquire advocates via text messaging. 69% of
advocates acquired in 2018 were acquired via SMS Keyword campaigns,
20% via Facebook Lead Ads and 11% via social media (Facebook and
Connections between advocates and regulatory agencies (e.g., EPA, FCC)
increased 700% between 2016 and 2018. Regulatory bodies interpret how
to implement new and existing laws and offer an alternative way for
organizations to influence policy.
Connections between citizens and local lawmakers increased threefold
from 2017 to 2018 as organizations hyper-focused on local legislation
to have an immediate impact on their communities.
There was a dramatic increase in patch-through advocacy-related calls
following the 2016 election. In 2017, advocates made 542% more
patch-through calls to lawmakers than they did in 2016. This number
remained fairly steady in 2018.
The report also offers actionable takeaways that organizations can
easily implement in their own digital advocacy campaigns. For example:
SMS is a more effective engagement medium when supporters are being
asked to sign a petition than when they are asked to contact their
SMS digital advocacy campaigns are best executed Tuesday through
Phone2Action is offering a free webinar that explores its research
findings on Thursday, May 23 at 1pm Eastern (register here).
To download a free copy of the State of Advocacy report, visit https://phone2action.com/resource/the-state-of-advocacy.
Phone2Action examined anonymized, aggregated advocacy data from
nonprofit organizations, associations, and companies that used the
Phone2Action platform in 2018 and a sub-sample of 260 organizations that
used the platform over the past three years. The usage data originates
from organizations’ activity within the platform, such as creating
campaigns, and from advocates taking action through the platform, such
as signing a petition or contacting a legislator.
Phone2Action, founded by Ximena Hartsock and Jeb Ory, is a comprehensive
digital advocacy and communications platform that directly powers social
movements by connecting users to lawmakers via technology. For more
information, please visit: www.phone2action.com.