March 04, 2019
Social media is an excellent platform to communicate with your elected officials, especially Twitter. The key is to “tag” the elected official(s) you’re addressing using their official Twitter account. Keep in mind that many elected officials may have both a campaign Twitter account and an “official” Twitter account – the latter is preferred.
With Twitter, you have only 280 characters to convey your message, plus an image or link. Try writing out your full message first, then review with a critical eye and pare down accordingly. Always keep it professional, even if you’re tweeting your opposition to a legislator’s bill.
Most legislation can be viewed as either solving a problem – or creating one, depending on which side you stand. When tweeting in support of something, or to encourage a vote for something, make sure you’re stating WHY (ie, the problem) and what you want the legislator to DO about it (ie, the solution). Keep in mind that a legislator may not be familiar with all the bill numbers in a session, especially if they’re not the ones introducing that legislation. Any reference to legislation should be #hashtagged, with a very short description of the bill after. For example:
As a practicing physician, I know how critical vaccinations are to prevent the spread of disease. @DrPanMD, vote YES on #SB277 #vaccine bill.
You can also sign up for the California Medical Association (CMA) Social Media Ambassador program, which provides training, advice and content to help keep your colleagues and other medical professionals informed, connected and engaged. Click here for more information.
And of course, make sure to follow CMA and its affiliates on social media using the handles below.