Case Study: Human Rights Campaign Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal, Part 3
A November e-mail was sent by Alva, with his name replacing Solmonese's in the from line. Its subject was "Breaking: Pentagon report says gays should serve. Tell Congress to act!" Alva's e-mail encouraged recipients to tell your senators to repeal DADT. The gray box reinforced the subject line, and a P.S. was added after Alva's signature, with the call to action to make two calls — one for each senator in your state — to your senators' offices to tell them to repeal DADT … then report your calls on the DADT HRC microsite.
One of the final messages came on Dec. 17, again from Solmonese. Its subject line was "'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' vote TOMORROW!" This message urged recipients to call their senators with a four-step proposal:
- Call one senator's office, and tell the staff person who answers where you live so they know you're a real constituent.
- Tell them you want the senator to support the standalone bill repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" – and that you'll remember how they vote when they're next up for election.
- Thank them, hang up, and make your second call to the other senator.
- Click here to let us know you made a call – we use this information to guide our lobbying efforts, so please don't skip it.
HRC also creatively told recipients to save the Congressional Switchboard number — 202.224.3121 — in their cell phones and hand it to someone else to make those two calls, as well as posting it to your Facebook page so friends can take the same action. It ended with a P.S. to make the calls.
Those are just a few of the creatives used by HRC. The LGBT rights organization also used print and online advertisements, including full-page ads in Politico, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Boston Herald, the Virginian-Pilot and the Indianapolis Star, not to mention ads in 20 major LGBT outlets. It also incorporated a telemarketing component, where a firm HRC works with offered to do a break-even campaign — where the firm took on some of the risk of jumping on the phones. Via telemarketing, HRC reconnected with very deep lapsed members, using the momentum and media exposure of the DADT repeal to bring them back to the organization.