Chatition rather than petition – don’t miss out on the revolution in petition signature collection

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Takeaways:

Chatition is a special form of collecting signatures online. Rather than steering the user to a landing page, you use Facebook’s Messenger service as a landing platform. Here, the user will be guided through an automated conversation where they can learn more about the issue and sign the petition if they so desire.

The three most important advantages of using this approach:

- Better conversion rates that lead to lower data acquisition cost

- The possibility of subsequently re-engaging the chatition signers since you are allowed to send them Messenger messages later on

- A much more interesting experience than using a boring landing page, this option is far superior in terms of targeting Millennials and digital savvy demographics

Petitions are among the most common tools of issue advocacy and involving voters in public policy and governance. They are used by a variety of players, from politicians and NGOs all the way to local citizens’ initiatives. In between elections, they are among the most effective instruments of democratic civic participation and public oversight. They are also key tools for politicians to keep in touch with their voters.

Nevertheless, the established practice of launching petitions often fails to engage the public: one might say they occasionally come, infrequently sign, and always leave. And that’s it then.

This is not up to our expectations of either democratic engagement or innovative political marketing. If you launch a petition, you want the process to actively engage citizens, to allow them to shape the process and to make sure that they continue to feel and remain involved.

A new form of petition

To do that, we recommend what we call chatition, that is a Facebook Messenger chat-based petition, rather than traditional landing page-based petitions. Online petitions require you to find your way to the landing pages, which tend to be boring, generate few clicks and often result in losing the visitors’ interest. And losing hard-earned (not to mention expensive) interest is pretty much the last thing you want.

Chatition uses Facebook’s ubiquitous Messenger service to make the process of involving voters simpler and cheaper, while it vastly increases conversion rates. Unlike opening up a distinct website, the user stays within the FB universe where they tend to be anyway. To sign the petition, all they need to do is to click a quick reply button, there is no need to fill out cumbersome forms and read through extraneous texts apart from what matters, namely the petition itself.

Improved GDPR-compliant targeting

Moreover, integration into Facebook allows you to target the ads at a population that is likely interested in the issue you raise. As part of the FB experience, you can even target the audience more specifically by political sympathies or particularly affected demographics, for example, which increases conversion rates.

A not insignificant benefit in light of increasingly stringent privacy requirements is that user consent and the sharing of information are GDPR-proof, which means that the entire process complies with the strictest privacy standards to date.

Let’s keep in touch

But there’s still more. Connecting with voters this way allows you to keep them updated about the petition process and to ask for their input, reactions and reflections, potentially making it possible for you to adjust and improve your position on the issue to better reflect stakeholder preferences.

This means that chatition also provides a way of establishing long-term ties with voters that may extend beyond the specific issue – contingent on the user’s agreement, of course. They will become subscribers of your Messenger channel and this will allow you to send them messages that will appear in their Messenger app among updates from friends and family. Using these broadcast messages, you can update them about the petition process, but at the same time you can also engage them on other issues as well: you can inform them about your next petition, invite them to an event, ask for donations, etc.

The numbers are clear: chatition is significantly cheaper

DatAdat has been using this tool with a variety of clients and our experience thus far allows us to quantify your advantages when you forgo a traditional landing page in favor of chatition.

Fortunately, in many of the campaigns we have run thus far with chatition, we also had landing pages, which made it possible for us to compare the relative data acquisition costs. In all but one of the campaigns chatition proved significantly cheaper in terms of the cost of conversion, which amounted to a low of 19% of the landing page conversion costs to a high of 72%.

Based on our experience, we believe that – using a conservative estimate – in a national campaign with well-designed and popular messages chatbot ads could reduce the price tag of conversion by 30%. But you don’t have to take our word for it, go ahead and try us and chatition out – it won’t cost you a penny and you’ll see how it works for you, too.

And, in conclusion, here is a summary of the benefits of chatition:

- Better user experience – the interaction with the user is smoother, there is no friction and all contact is managed within a single app

- The interaction is more interesting, conversation-like – you can send video, links, etc.

- Messenger chat is a new channel that people manifestly do not find tedious

- There is no GDPR jeopardy

- It’s very easy to share

- There is a possibility of retargeting - sending the users messages later

Please don’t hesitate to call us to find out more about chatition and to allow us to give you a test run, it’s easy and free.

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