Here’s a question I hear a lot from folks who are on or just starting to use Twitter: Is Twitter a good tool for online advocacy? Can tweets help get the word out to raise awareness and catalyze change? Does anyone in D.C. or on Capitol Hill really use or listen to what’s being said on Twitter? The answers are yes, yes and yes. Twitter is a great action tool for grassroots outreach and a lot of leaders in Congress, D.C., and beyond follow what’s being said about them and to them on Twitter.
So, two weeks ago, when we asked ONE members to join us in sending our vaccines message to the White House on Twitter we were more than pleased with the results. More than 2,300 ONE members and advocates posted their Twitter message on our national map. Overall, more than 3,200 messages were tweeted across the Twitterverse. These were tweets from everyday activists like you who wanted @whitehouse (The White House’s official Twitter handle) to get the message that we’re serious about their pledge to fund vaccines that could save up to four million children.
The tweet itself was a 140-character work of pure simplicity, asking the White House to make an ambitious pledge for vaccines funding at the GAVI meeting next Monday, June 13:
@WhiteHouse, got plans on June 13? Why not pledge to save 4m kids w/vaccines? Plz respond!
A week later, we heard from sources that @whitehouse got the messages and that they were listening, so we asked some of top our top tweeples to send another message:
@whitehouse: Do your fair share. Pledge $450m over 3yrs to save 4m kids w vaccines. @ONECampaign #vax
While @whitehouse didn’t respond to our outreach via Twitter, we know they got the message and that every tweet from ONE members made a huge impact. Thank you to everyone who tweeted about this critical message.
And if you are on Twitter and love to communicate in 140 characters and less, tweet us! Follow @ONECampaign and send us a message about why you lend your voice in the fight against extreme poverty. We look forward to continuing the conversation and taking future actions together on Twitter.
Follow Garth on Twitter @GarthMoore