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Phone Bank Canvassing

 Instructions for Hosting Your Own Phone Bank

 Prior to the Event:

When hosting a phone bank, consider recruiting volunteers from your organization who would be willing and comfortable to ask other members to register to vote. The good thing about REALTORS® is that, since they are involved in sales, this usually isn’t a hard person to find!

Aim to invite more members than you need to the phone bank event, as occasionally a few will not show up. In addition, ask those you invite to RSVP to confirm their attendance. A couple days before your event, send an e-mail to remind everyone of the event's details. Consider including the agenda for the event and the script (PDF) for the phone calls so that participants may review.

 Day of the Event:

Just prior to your event, make sure you have enough telephones for those who have confirmed their attendance. Make sure you are in a room, or rooms, with little outside noises or disturbances. You may want to offer refreshments or a light meal to kick off the event.

Another nice touch is to provide volunteers with buttons, bumper stickers or other promotional items that will get them excited about what they are doing and to thank them for their time. (NAR offers "Vote, Act, Invest" promotional items that you can order.)

  The Event:

 1. Welcome From Host
Introduce yourself and explain why the association is hosting this event. Outline what you have planned for this phone bank and what you hope to get out of it. How many people are you trying to reach? How many people would you like each attendee to personally contact? What is the overarching goal of the REALTOR® voter registration drive?

 2. Group Introductions
Ask volunteers to introduce themselves and share their own story about what inspired them to get involved in the REALTOR® association for this event. Build as much camaraderie as possible, and have fun getting to know the other volunteers.

 3. Training
a. Review with the volunteers the script for the phone calls they will be making. Review possible questions they can expect.
b. Review the call lists; each volunteer will receive a list of names with telephone numbers (these master lists of non-registered members are provided to the association by NAR). You may wish to add a response column to the list so that callers can track the responses they receive. (See an example of a tally sheet.)
c. Provide pens and clipboards so volunteers can mark responses on their lists.
d. Set expectations for the number of calls you would like each volunteer to make and the goals you are trying to achieve.
4. Role play the script with a partner; have attendees pair off and role play the script with one another. Make sure everyone is familiar with the script before you begin so they are comfortable on the phone and are prepared for possible questions. 

 5. Begin Making Calls
Divide your list provided by NAR so that each volunteer receives an equal number of people to call. Ask volunteers to enter the results of their calls as they go along. Keep the group posted on the event’s progress (e.g., “Jake hit his hourly goal;”  “Maggie is leading the team in number of calls made.”)

 6. Compile Your Results
Following the calls, it is important to compile the results from the calling lists. Tracking results will help to ensure a more efficient, productive campaign, and will teach you more about the voters you are trying to reach.

 7. Wrap Up
Thank volunteers for coming.  The volunteers are the backbone of your association, and recognizing them not only is the right thing to do, but helps foster good will and positive responses when you ask for their participation again. Consider sending thank you emails to all of your volunteers, summarizing what the association was able to accomplish with their help.

 Following the Event:

 1. Review Your Phone Bank Event
Review the results that were tracked on the calling lists by your volunteers.

 2. Send NAR Your Feedback
Let NAR know what worked and what did not. NAR will share tips with other associations about successful association events and endeavors. E-mail your feedback to Kyle Lambert London at klambert@realtors.org.

(This agenda is meant only to be a suggestion to guide you in your activities. Feel free to organize your phone bank according to your preferences).

 Back to the main Voter Registration Initiative page.