How can you reach thousands of constituents when you are stuck at home in quarantine? The easy answer is telephone town halls! Here are a few things you might not have known about telephone town halls:
1. They can be run remotely
Typically, these events happen around a conference table, with most of the team in the same room to provide support during the telephone town hall.
However, as long as you and your team have a phone and internet access, you can still host an event easily with a few adjustments:
- Instead of having the Member act as moderator, designate someone else on the team to keep an eye on the Question and Answer queue and introduce constituents.
- You can also hire a professional moderator from Broadnet.
- Setup a Microsoft Teams chat, and give your team access to the Question and Answer queue so they can provide information to the Member ahead of the question.
This might sound complicated, but after your first event, everyone will have the hang of how they run and you will be able to schedule them more frequently.
2. Invite a guest speaker
Typically, it’s only the Member taking questions and doing most of the talking. Introducing a health expert, small business specialist, or local government representative can be a great way to provide answers to specific constituent questions. These are all popular guests for COVID-19 topics and can be a powerful resource to reinforce the Member’s message, helping to bring certainty to constituents.
Guests can call in from anywhere, just like a normal conference call.
Pro tip: Just make sure they know to mute the phone when they aren’t talking!
3. Host several smaller events instead of one big event
On average, a 60 minute event allows you to field around 10 questions, so it is crucial to make sure those questions are relevant to the audience you are trying to reach. Here are some groups that offices like reaching out to:
- Small business owners
- Communities severely impacted by COVID-19
- Faith-based organizations
- High unemployment areas
By breaking down the groups and/or topics, you will be able to best serve each community and make the most of the 60 minutes.
Nervous about setting up an event? Reach out and we can walk you through all the options and make sure you are prepared to do an amazing job on your first event. You can also check our our Ultimate Guide to Telephone Town Halls. We’ve helped several offices host their very first event over the last couple of months, and we can’t wait to help you with your next event.