Click to Call is an effective tool for advocacy campaigns to connect volunteers to citizens or directly connect citizens themselves to lawmakers. A simple click of a button can connect someone to another person over the internet.
So…why not use letters or emails?
You can put forth your points in a more concise manner and arguably include a lot more information in support of your cause, right?
Well, these forms of communication can, and at times, should be used. But they don’t really add a sense of urgency.
Emails and letters may or may not be read, but a phone call ringing true in someone’s ear is undeniably hard to ignore.
The functionality of Click to Call may be a little ambiguous because of the different ways in which it can be used. So, this article attempts to do a bit of decluttering regarding its usage and to explain its benefits.
Oh, and also to show how you, as an advocacy group, can adopt it into your outreach. Here we go.
Different ways advocacies can use Click to call
- Connect grassroots supporters to legislators
Using tools like Salsa and New/Mode, grassroots-level supporters can connect to legislators using their phones. These types of software usually provide scripts as well, to facilitate conversation about whichever issue you want to talk about. Campaign managers can mobilize support and direct them towards a legislator’s office to talk about, say, a bill that should (or shouldn’t) be passed.
There are usually two steps involved here: first, you press the click-to-call button after which you receive a call from the organization providing guidelines on what to say, and second, you are patched through to the office, where you can speak about the issue.
For instance, The Wilderness Society Action Fund uses this feature to connect you to your representative to show your support for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
- Connect volunteers to supporters
The click-to-call button can and does find its use in different types of supporter outreach campaigns. Agents simply have to log onto the campaign website or interface, and hit the call button to move through a contact list. Advocacy groups use this strategy to reach out to a large supporter base.
Cases in point:
- For GOTV outreach, agents can use the click-to-call button to phone people and ask them to vote
- For volunteer recruitment or outreach
- To raise funds for a fundraiser, agents can call people to find out if they’re willing to donate or to thank them
- To gauge supporter levels, to find out which issues are bothering people, and to conduct surveys
- To invite people to attend rallies
As you can see, it can be used for different types of campaigns with specific objectives in mind.
This is extremely convenient when compared to how advocacies used to phonebank earlier; paper lists with numbers used to be handed out to volunteers, which they had to manually dial to make calls. Can you even imagine that?!
So which dialer does it use? Well, the most commonly used dialer for click-to-call is the power dialer, where every contact on a list is called without fail, and details of the conversation are entered in a survey.
CallHub offers click-to-call for different purposes; definitely check it out!
- Using Facebook’s click-to-call ads
Everyone, well almost everyone, browses through social media on a regular basis. Advocacies can definitely leverage this use of Facebook for their campaigns. Besides, Facebook offers local advertising which means that your ads show up when they happen to be near your office’s location. While scrolling, people can see your ad and if it interests them, they just have to use the click-to-call button and enquire.
Maybe you are an advocacy group looking to recruit volunteers in your locality for an upcoming campaign. All you have to do now is advertise on Facebook and wait for potential volunteers to simply reach out to you by calling.
Or perhaps your advocacy desperately needs funds to work towards saving a forest from being burned down due to that new bill that is about to be passed. People see this, call to enquire, and then volunteer or donate. Now, you don’t just have money but support as well.
These are just a few examples of click-to-call on Facebook. Advocacies definitely can use this feature for other purposes according to their needs.
So to clarify, let’s look at the clear advantages that click-to-call offers:
- It’s easier
Instead of having to manually dial a number, people can just call with easy clicks. Whatever the purpose may be, whether it’s raising awareness about a sensitive issue, or to get connected to your local representative, clicking to be put through simplifies the process of connection (pun wholly intended there!)
Besides, calling is easier as you can gain more information by asking more questions; something which might not happen in an email or a text. A click-to-call button clearly facilitates this.
- Offers a better chance of conversion
What if someone is scrolling through your website or Facebook page, is curious to know more about your cause and wants to be a part of a campaign? If you have a click-to-call button, there is a greater chance of that person actually calling you.
Or if the person is fed up with an issue and comes to your advocacy site to play their part in resolving it. They see a click to call, and either phone you, or are patched through to a legislator to voice their concern.
This button shows that you want to help connect with people in an easier way and also desire for people to reach out to you.
- Very useful with Power and Preview Dialers
During political or advocacy campaigns when volunteers are constantly phone banking to identify voter issues or for fundraising, click-to-call becomes very useful. These campaigns usually are online where agents use a browser and/or smartphone to make calls.
The dialers commonly used here are the power or the preview dialers, both of which use click-to-call.
In the case of the power dialer, agents can make the call, fill out a survey, and then use the click to call to phone the next person. This sort of flexibility is what makes it advantageous; agents can make calls at their own convenience.
Similarly for the preview dialer, agents can organically research the recipient, clicking only when they are ready to make the call.
Hopefully, this article helped clear some of the misunderstandings regarding click-to-call and how advocacies can use it to benefit themselves. Clearly, this tiny yet visible button, rectangular or squarish, has the potential to make an impact in different ways.