We are one month into 2017, and the 115th Congress is already setting records! With a new administration, cabinet hearings, a supreme court nomination and unprecedented levels of civic engagement, constituents and legislators are communicating at the highest frequency ever. One Member of the House told the Associated Press that call volume has increased by as much as 1000%. The Senate is experiencing similar levels of activity - one Senate office reported they averaged 1.5 million calls each day last week.
In addition to the significant increase in phone calls, there is also an unprecedented volume of email being sent to Members of Congress. Contact forms that are easy to access and constituent engagement apps (like Countable or Democracy.io) make it incredibly simple to send email to elected officials and have led to the record levels of mail. We’ve seen this, too: over the first month of the new Congress, most Fireside CRM customers are receiving 2-4 times as many emails as they normally do.
While there is no way to control the rate constituents contact your office, Fireside customers have tools at their fingertips needed to effectively manage the increased level of engagement!
To keep up with the unending stream of correspondence, Fireside Inbox Automations are here to make managing incoming mail and advocacy campaigns a breeze. Using Automations, some Fireside customers are able to automatically log and assign more than 75% of their new mail - skipping the Inbox completely!
It's even more impressive what newly elected Members of Congress have accomplished - a third of Fireside freshman users have been automatically logging nearly 50% (or more) of their incoming mail!
Automations are incredibly easy to set-up. The first time an advocacy campaign lands in your Inbox, you will have the option to 'Do This Always' with your selected criteria. In the future, all emails that match that campaign will skip the Inbox entirely, be tagged with the proper Issues and Affiliations, and go to the Batch and staffer of choice. You only have to decide how to log a campaign or type of mail once - Fireside will automatically log the rest for you going forward.
Using smarter, more advanced tools like Automations can be a huge timesaver and help you turn around your mail faster - even during high-volume surges. When you spend less time in the Inbox, you can spend even more time focusing on your strategic legislative initiatives and engaging with your constituents. Read about Automations for campaigns, legislative issues, subject lines and more.
Have questions about Automations or Fireside21? Give us a call, send us an email or hop into chat - we’re more than happy to help!