It may seem as though politicians pay little or no attention to the mail that they receive from their constituents, but that is wrong. People who write clear, personal letters to politicians have more influence than they think. Those who hold an elected office often receive hundreds of emails and letters each day. Because of this, writing a letter to a politician must be done in a way that makes it stand out. Here are a few tips.
Writing a Letter to a Politician
Keep it Simple
When writing a letter to a politician, keep it simple. Address one issue or topic instead of bringing up every issue that you’re passionate about. Type it up, and don’t write a letter that’s longer than one page. Try using a three-paragraph letter structure. This will make your letter scannable. Also, consider using a list format. Start by saying who you are and why you’re taking the time to write them a letter. Tell them why they should listen to you so include any credentials that you may have. Provide some detail, but be factual and avoid emotions.
Keep it Local
If you’re writing a letter to a politician, then choose a representative from your local district or one of your state senators. Your vote gets them elected or it can keep them out of office. They are aware of this and pay attention when their constituents correspond with them. Personalize your letter by commenting on things that they support or are against.
Keep it Respectful
If you’re reaching out to a politician, then you have strong feelings about the issue. Be respectful and courteous in your letter. Also, be sure to give him or her your name. When people write anonymous letters, they are just discarded. Include specific evidence or examples that support your position, and thank the politician for his or her time.
Writing a Letter to a Politician Can Be Effective
The best way to be heard by an elected government official is usually during a face-to-face meeting or at a town hall event. Email is fast and convenient, but it may not have the same impact as writing a letter to a politician. With the right words, you may be able to influence him or her toward your point of view.