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Paula's Care2 Petition was a success with more than
19,000 signatures, resulting in saving the lives 37 pet cats!

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246 million signatures and counting

How To Promote Your Petition

Start with People You Know

Initially, the best audience for your petition will be your network of friends and family. Tell them why you've created the petition and why it's important. Ask them to sign and to tell others about it. Then, as you collect more signatures, you will want to start thinking more broadly. If it's a local issue, reach out to people in your community. For other issues, connect to groups that have an interest or stake in the issue.

Easy Online Activism

  • Promote the petition on a website or blog.
  • Use social networks like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and Care2, as well as social media, including the Care2 News Network, Digg, Reddit, StumbleUpon, and Yahoo Buzz.
  • Create a GoldMail slideshow and promote it to friends, networks, and communities. The slideshow lets you use both audio and visuals to educate people about the issue and make a compelling case for signing your petition. Care2 members have free access to Goldmail's slideshow tool.
  • Create a compelling video and post it to YouTube.
  • If you have a budget, buy advertising from Google or Facebook. Especially for local issues, you can buy reasonably priced petition ads targeting keyword searches that relate to your issue, and pay only when people click on the ad.

Offline Promotional Ideas

  • Find local and/or national groups and organizations with a similar interest.
  • Contact your local newspapers and broadcast media outlets to tell them about your issue (and petition).
  • Post flyers around your community, especially in places where you think there will be people who would sign it—such as supermarkets, libraries, bookstores, and coffee shops. Include tear-away tabs with the URL of the petition on it.
  • Pay attention to the news.
    1. If a local talk show is discussing your issue, call in, make comments, and mention your petition.
    2. Letters to the editor: many newspapers prefer letters that respond to particular articles they've printed, but if you cannot find one, try to tie a current article in with your topic. Use your own words—if editors receive the SAME letter from multiple people, that hurts the cause rather than helps it.
    3. Opinion pieces: if your issue is timely, you can check the newspapers' websites for length and other opinion piece requirements. Then, passionately express your viewpoint without exaggerating, and include footnoted facts. Quote from other resources, but don't plagiarize.

Recruit Others to Help

It is very important to remember that you are not the only person who cares about your issue. Each person who signs your petition and reads your updates is a potential ally. Help them become advocates. Make sure the information you post is accurate and up- to-date. Don't overwhelm the petition with lots of dry facts, but include a link where people can go for additional information and downloadable resources. The more people you can recruit to help—even informally—the more opportunities there will be for others to hear about your issue.