Promoting your #ProtestPP event
Note: The instructions on this page were provided for a previous event. Find instructions for #ProtestPP’s current activity protesting Planned Parenthood partner Stericycle on May 22nd here.
Getting the word out using good promotional tools and techniques is one of the most important steps you’ll take, and the best way to ensure a great crowd. Use the tools below to let the world know about your event.
Note: When using any of the sample materials below, be sure to fill in your specific details in all the bracketed sections, and delete any bracketed text that is not applicable to your event.
- Promoting Your event in Church Bulletins
- Promoting your event on Facebook
- Promoting your event Via Email
- Promoting your event with a Customizable Flyer
Promoting Your event in Church Bulletins
Send out a bulletin announcement to all the local churches in your area. It’s a fantastic way to get free publicity! You can also send it to diocesan Respect Life or Life and Family coordinators to send to their local contacts. The national team will provide a bulletin announcement very soon. Click here for a bulletin announcement template you can modify for your event.
Be sure to replace ALL the bracketed text with the correct details for your event! Don’t be afraid to include your contact information! It’s very unlikely that you’ll be overwhelmed with requests for information, and the people who do get information from you will be very glad they could get a hold of you easily.
Announcements are often required to be handed in the Monday before the Sunday you want them in the bulletin but we’ve found that in some churches it can be as far out as two Fridays (nine days) before the Sunday, so to get your announcement in the bulletin on Sunday, March 31, you’ll want to submit it by Friday, March 22, and to get it in the bulletin on Sunday, April 7 (the Sunday before the event), you’ll want to submit it by Friday, March 29.
When you send in your announcement, ask them to run it each Sunday leading up to your event, and follow up with an email or phone call in the subsequent weeks so it doesn’t slip through the cracks.
Promoting Your event on Facebook
Facebook has become a powerful tool for promoting pro-life events like your #ProtestPP event. For some local leaders, it has become the primary way to build enthusiasm and boost attendance. Below, you’ll find instructions for creating a Facebook event you can share, promoting your event with frequent status updates, and even advertising your event on Facebook.
Create a Facebook Event
A “Facebook Event” is a special page you can create for sharing the details of your event. If you’re not familiar with how to do this, read through the “Creating and Editing Events” page on Facebook. Note: When you create your Facebook event, be sure to make it a Public event.
To help “brand” your event, use this cover photo for your event page. For your event description, use the following text, which you may modify as needed:
The 4th annual National Day of Prayer and Protest Against Planned Parenthood will take place at hundreds of locations across the country on Saturday, April 13th.
This year’s #ProtestPP is taking a new form. We’re partnering with 40 Days for Life to bring peaceful candlelight vigils to Planned Parenthood centers from coast to coast.
Here in [YOUR CITY], the vigil will take place at [LOCATION] at [TIME].
Once you’ve set up a Facebook event for your event, invite all your friends to attend and spread the word, even if they don’t live nearby. Someone in your town may learn about the event through a mutual Facebook friend.
But don’t just stop with one mention of the event. It’s easy to miss things on Facebook, so make a point of inviting your friends more than once before your event. And share the event page regularly on your wall—every day is not too often.
Once you’ve created your Facebook Event, send a link to the national team so we can add it to the listing for your site. That way, new people can RSVP and then share the event with their friends, too.
If your event is being hosted by an organization that has a Facebook page, post on that page, too.
In short, try to post at least one item relevant to the event every day on all the Facebook pages you have access to. And always include a link to either your Facebook event, or the locations page at ProtestPP.com (http://protestpp.com/locations/).
Advertise your event on Facebook
One final way to promote your event on Facebook is through paid advertising, with a picture and ad copy that will draw people to your event. The more money you put behind your ad, the more people Facebook will show it to.
A budget of even $10 or $20 can give your event a lot more reach and get people excited to attend your event.
To create a Facebook ad, simply find the “Create” section at the bottom of your left sidebar on your Facebook page, and select “Ad”. You’ll then choose the “Engagement” objective and then “Event Responses”. Choose your event page as the event you’d like to advertise, and you’re off.
Next, choose your audience (include people who are interested in other pro-life groups), the picture for your ad, and how much money you would like to spend, and how long you would like the ad to run. We would recommend running an ad a week prior to the event and end it the day before the event. Here are two images you can use for your ad, or feel free to find your own:
Though Facebook’s ad creation tool is pretty easy to use, you can get step-by-step instructions on how to design and place an ad right here. And if you need further assistance, including photos you can use, contact the national team via email.
Promoting Your event Via Email
The national team has provided a sample email invitation sample email invitation so you can let your local contacts know about your event. Whether you use this sample as is, modify it or write your own, follow these guidelines:
1. Write as if you’re addressing a single person. People are more likely to respond to an individual plea (“Dear Friend”) than one addressed to a whole group (“Dear Friends”). You can also use a service like Mail Chimp that will allow you to personalize your emails with your contacts’ name, which gets much better results than an obvious group email.
2. Avoid using the word “we” to refer to a group that the recipient is not a part of, since that can be subtly alienating. Using “we” to mean “you and I” will help your recipients feel included.
3. Keep paragraphs short—a maximum of 4 lines of normal length.
4. Be sure to replace all bracketed text with the correct details for your event.
5. If possible, send a test message to a friend or team member to proof read before sending to all your contacts.
6. Send at minimum an email alert one week from your event date and a reminder message the day before the event.
Promoting Your event with a Customizable Flyer
Another great way to get the word out is by passing out or leaving flyers at your local churches, schools, or anywhere else you think pro-life people who will want to attend your event might be.
The national team has prepared 2 customizable flyers that you can use for this—one for a regular candlelight vigil and one if you’re tying your vigil into a 40 Days for Life campaign. To use, simply right click the links below and choose “Save Link As” to download the file to your computer.
NOTE: Do not fill out the flyer in your web browser or your changes will not be saved! You must download and open with Adobe Reader for the changes to be saved and printed.
Once you’ve downloaded the correct flyer, fill in the customizable boxes with the details for your event. Then save the flyer with a new file name so it will keep your changes, print and distribute! The flyer is full color, but it is designed to print well in black and white, too.
If you have any trouble with the flyer, please contact the national team via email for assistance.