The National Education Association is the largest educators union in the United States, with over three million members powering their organization. Their mission is “to advocate for education professionals and to unite our members and the nation to fulfill the promise of public education to prepare every student to succeed in a diverse and interdependent world.”
The National Education Association (NEA) joined Mobilize in 2019 to empower their state affiliates to take action leading up to the 2020 election. Then, the pandemic halted nearly all in-person instruction. As educators and students planned to go back to school, the NEA used Mobilize to host events to inform their members and others about a variety of topics, including how to return safely to in-person instruction. Now, the NEA is using Mobilize to inspire their more than three million members to take action for candidates and causes across the country.
Why the NEA Chose Mobilize
As a national organization with affiliates in every state, the NEA was looking for a solution to empower all their affiliates to host events and take action. Prior to using Mobilize, the NEA allowed (and still allow) their state affiliates to use whatever tools they think are best to achieve their mission. Affiliates then had a variety of software and platforms that they used to meet their goals, but it was difficult to compare and collect data between different groups or pull together nationwide actions based on state affiliate events.
Another factor that the NEA considered while testing out new software was that their affiliates are different sizes–some have hundreds of employees while others have a department with a few people. They needed a solution that could was easy to use for those smaller affiliates with limited staff while also being able to scale in complexity for their larger affiliates. Mobilize offered a unified, innovative solution to resolve the NEA’s needs, and that’s why they signed up for Mobilize in 2019 as they began to ramp up their campaign efforts for the 2020 election.
Once the NEA signed up for Mobilize, state affiliates began proactively contacting them about how they could sign up. The Mobilize platform’s automated reminders and actions saved hours of staff time and resources that allowed the NEA and their affiliates to focus on planning the event and promoting it in other ways (including through their email lists or sending texts through their integrated mobile messaging service).
The NEA then provided dashboards to all their state affiliates, which allowed them to host events and actions across the country. By having a unified event tracking system, they could easily gather data from their state affiliates and enable them to act on that data to help advance advocacy efforts in their communities. The NEA could also promote other organizations’ events that they supported heading into the upcoming election, which raised visibility for events they wanted to encourage their members to support. Mobilize’s integration with VAN was another bonus for the organization as it allowed them to track who was attending events to promote additional action. All these benefits that Mobilize provided made it the perfect tool to fulfill the NEA’s needs.
“Mobilize has been one of the easiest and most impactful tools to use on behalf of the NEA. It allows us to set up events, onboard new users, and gather data easily and quickly for all our state affiliates across the country. As someone who works with a number of technology platforms, I can confidently say that the amazing support we’ve received from the Mobilize team is unprecedented, and it sets them apart from other organizations.”
NEA Campaigns and Elections Specialist
How the NEA Shifted During the COVID-19 Pandemic
After the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early 2020, in-person instruction was halted in schools across the country. As students and educators were preparing to go back to school, the NEA knew educators, parents, and community members were concerned about returning to the classroom during a global pandemic. School districts across the country were planning different approaches to in-person learning, but educators and others wanted to hear from a trusted source about how they could ensure the best and safest educational environment. The NEA saw this as a critical need, so they created a webinar on “Safely Returning to In-Person Instruction” and posted it on the Mobilize platform. Because Mobilize made it easy to publish this event quickly in a relevant and timely circumstance, using a platform many NEA members were already familiar with, the event quickly gained traction and received over 40,000 signups.
While a majority of the attendees were educators, many others were parents, guardians, and community members who were concerned about how to safely return to in-person instruction. People were looking for a trusted messenger to talk about this topic and the National Education Association stepped in to fill that role to much success.
Impressive Results from NEA + Mobilize
In addition to their successful webinar on “Safely Returning to In-Person Instruction,” the NEA hosted many other events for their members to advocate on behalf of their organization. Here are some impressive results from the NEA and Mobilize partnership:
● The NEA has received over 240,000 signups for their events through Mobilize.
● Nearly half (46.5%) of those signups were driven through Mobilize automations–meaning no additional work was needed by the NEA. These automations help decrease no-shows and allow hosts to dedicate their time elsewhere (like promoting the event further through email lists or mobile messaging).
● Over 60,000 of these are “friend-to-friend" signups, meaning they were created due to supporters inviting friends and family by sharing events directly to their own networks. By encouraging their supporters to share events, the NEA helped grow their event attendance and the supporter lists for their state affiliates.
Mobilize is thankful for our partnership with the NEA because they’re a perfect example of a national organization that chose to embrace Mobilize as a powerful organizing platform to empower their state affiliates, and the results speak for themselves. By automating many of the NEA’s event and volunteer recruitment processes, Mobilize gave valuable time back to these state affiliates to allocate towards other pressing priorities.
In addition to the NEA, Mobilize is trusted by over 3,000 unions, campaigns, nonprofits, and advocacy organizations to mobilize supporters to take action. Our best-in-class, easy-to-use platform allows organizations to build their volunteer capacity quickly with built-in tools like bring-a-friend prompts, automated weekly newsletters, and more.
If you’d like to learn more about the Mobilize platform or start your account, schedule a demo today. Or, if you’re ready to sign up now, try a free trial account and publish your first event in minutes.