Digital advocacy has become one of the most powerful marketing tools of the 21st century. With technology developing at what seems to be an ever-increasing rate, it is vital to understand and, more importantly, to be able to leverage rapidly changing digital communication platforms.

From smartphones and tablets to computers and game consoles, the number of devices consumers use to engage with digital media is steadily increasing as a result. Since Apple released the first edition of the iPhone in 2007, the hours per day that adults in the United States spend on digital media devices has more than doubled, from an average 2.7 hours to 5.6 hours daily.



This increase in digital usage brings more opportunities to engage with consumers. There are hundreds of ways to successfully communicate via digital communication platforms, some of which cost thousands of dollars and others that may be cheaper but simply take time.

So, how do you efficiently launch a successful digital advocacy campaign on a shoestring budget?

To successfully execute an effective digital advocacy campaign you must start by setting goals, identifying your target audience and analyzing what they have to say and where they say it – as you must understand your target audience before you can engage them and ultimately educate, recruit and activate supporters.

When setting goals, it is important to make them both qualitative and quantitative. Once you’ve set goals, identified your target audience and which digital platforms they are actively engaged with (social media platforms, websites, apps, etc.), then you can figure out how to best leverage your shoestring budget marketing plan and the digital advocacy piece of it.

When working with a shoestring budget, here are a few tools to consider:

Twibbon – This tool helps you to launch digital advocacy campaigns on Facebook and Twitter that let supporters change their profile picture in support of your cause. This tool is free and can help spread awareness quickly.

Thunderclap – This tool allows you to create a free online campaign through which you can amplify supporters to share your messaging on multiple social media channels at the same time. This is extremely helpful in educating stakeholders and gaining support via newly developed brand ambassadors.

Phone2Action – This digital grassroots platform makes it easy to compel and engage supporters. The platform is tailored for political advocacy campaigns and encompasses a diverse set of tools that can be used to embed calls to action via text messages, emails and social media.

Shoestring budget marketing can be challenging, but using digital advocacy to engage your audience through multiple channels in an effort to create awareness and inspire action doesn’t have to be. We live in a digital age, and if you embrace it by staying up-to-date on newly emerging tools, you will be able to connect with stakeholders and successfully carry out digital advocacy campaigns. Just remember, despite the screen, you are connecting with real people, and communicating with them authentically is key.