Grow some roots, Government Relations Software is Better for Advocacy


Grassroots software
Grassroots software options from SmartThoughts

Are you looking to do better at your Government Relations activities? Are your members or donors yearning to  have a legislative action center on your Organization’s Website? Need to move beyond those cluttered spreadsheets which is outdated?

Today, there are a plethora of Government relations software options to move you beyond spreadsheets and your old Rolodex which are very comprehensive to automate your government relations activities today. 

And, depending on your specific needs, you can get organized and agile and tap into the stream of data that’s out there and continually changing.

What do you need? The following is a sampling of what you can get:

  • Online Government Relations Database: A self-updating database of the U.S. House of Representatives, your state legislators, office and legislative committee staff. Use the database to generate reports for listings, merged mailings for email campaigns.
  • Online Grassroots Advocacy Database: A contacts grass-roots manager that you match with the membership or donor database. Filter, organize and generate listings for fundraising support.
  • Event and Congressional Staff Email Marketing: An email “blaster” that is compliant with ISP standards and won’t relegate your mass emails to the recipients’ junk file. This tool will allow you to store templates, do a good job with the visuals and keep track of bounces, open rates, click-through on embedded links as well as unsubscribers.
  • Legislative Tracking: A tracker for legislation that affects your organization. Need to plan your lobbying or ask your grass roots contacts to call their legislator about an upcoming vote? The tracker typically has the ability to predict how a particular legislator will vote based on his or her voting history.
  • Online Form for your members to report contacts with Legislators:  There are systems today which will provide online contact forms for your members to report their meetings and personal contacts with legislators. And, guess what? There is even your very own form designer so that you can create and maintain your own forms (Bye, Bye programmers!).
  • Fly In Management: An interactive and integrated private calendar and meeting journal. Schedule and coordinate meetings and events. Record attendees and enter critical notes and documents.  It offers solutions to the real problems that arise when planning and executing a successful event.

    Government Relations Software
    FLY In Management

Also, software as a service is the norm for most Government Relations Software programs today. In fact, you can find online subscription services that do most of the above, and include an advocacy section to your organization’s website on a beer budget!

Whether you’re tracking a grant, eagerly eyeing important legislation or just keeping up with your grass-roots donors and legislators, you no longer need to depend on legacy desktop software like access/spreadsheets or mind-numbing web searches.  And, yes, many of the systems available today will integrate nicely with most Association Management and Donor Management systems.

Contact us. We can help you find and adopt the government relations software you’re looking for today! 

How Government Relations Software Can Boost Advocacy

Benefits of

Many nonprofit associations rely heavily on local, story state and federal government representatives and their legislative activities to stay relevant.  Whether nonprofits need funding, or a change in laws or regulations, the survival and viability of nonprofits is sustained by managing and influencing that governmental activity. In this article, we take a look at why grassroots software for success.

How Government Relations Software Can Boost Advocacy

As any executive director will tell you, managing legislative expectations can be a full-time job.  The amount of data relevant to a nonprofit can be overwhelming and difficult to track and organize.  Associations must have at their fingertips a wealth of information including names and contact information for important members of Congress, bills drafted pertinent to your mission, and email information for supporting constituents and contacts. As such, government relations software is a key ingredient to the success of your advocacy and government relations efforts.

Knowing and taking advantage of political relationships are often the key to impacting the political process. A grassroots software solution permits your supporters to systematically record and categorize relationships between themselves and legislators. You can quickly access people who have relationships, when action is needed, using these supporter relationships to get your message across to specific legislators.

With Government relationship software providers you have many options (with or without your Membership Software integration) to address this area of need for your organization.We can help your organization find the exact kind of intuitive interface your association requires to obtain the following 8 benefits:

  1. The ability to maintain an up-to-date database of all members of Congress, their staff and state legislators and their staff.
  2. The capability to provide zip to district matching data sets .
  3. The control of linkage by geocoding the address to census block group
  4. The ability to manage constituent contacts by matching address information with their appropriate legislators.  Government relations software allows you to organize and email your contacts easily.
  5. The ability to send professional email blasts with a selection of pre-designed templates. After you send an email, pull comprehensive reports on such things as bounces, click throughs, open rates, and unsubscribes.
  6. The ability to track bills and votes that are important to your nonprofit.
  7. The ability to organize meetings and events seamlessly with easy-to-use private and group calendar functionality.  Create reports based on attendees, notes and other relevant event documents.
  8. The ability to filter congressional and state legislative news pertinent to your association

Your end result is a more powerful database for your government team members that can be used for engaging supporters to contact legislators.  Plus, the legislator relationship data enables you to be more strategic in locating people who can reach a specific legislator.

We believe that government relations software is not one size fits all. With this fact known, we take a consultative approach in our efforts to mutually explore with our clients the shared outcome of a solution that truly meets our customer’s needs.

For additional information on our approach to the software selection process for government relations needs of your organization please contact us. Until next time, keep SmartThoughts in mind.

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