While the message of a petition needs to be strong and well targeted, writing a petition is not necessarily as difficult as you might think. Before you begin, you need to set out your goals, identify your target market, and then write the petition in a clear and concise manner. Once this is complete you will need to promote your petition in order to gain the exposure that is needed to give it legs.
Set Your Goals
There have been petitions for just about anything you can imagine. The sacking or instatement of politicians, the legalisation or criminalisation of certain substances, or more specific petitions such as those attempting to change the time of a meeting. Determine what you want to achieve with your petition before you start the process because clear goals will help to ensure that you create a targeted and ultimately effective petition.
Identify Your Target
Governments and local councils, regulatory bodies, schools and education establishments; these are some of the groups that you might wish to petition. 10 Downing Street will accept online petitions and this means that everybody has the power to make a difference and implement changes. Determine who you wish to petition and then work out the most likely people that will sign your petition. If, for example, you have written a petition to have tuition fees lowered then students and their families are an obvious target.
Writing The Petition
Petitions should be concise while still adequately conveying your message. Outline the current situation, suggest solutions to the problem, and then provide an explanation of why these changes are required. By creating a petition that is overly wordy you will deter many people from taking the time to read and ultimately sign the petition. This is why it is important that you get your message across clearly in as few words as possible.
However, do not miss out any of the important elements of a petition. Find examples to help you write a killer petition – with 800 years or so of petitions you should be able to find one that is relevant and offers the best example.
Writing a petition is only the first part of the process and once it’s written you then need to find an outlet so that it gains exposure from people that are most likely to sign it. You can print physical copies of a petition off, but you may find greater success by promoting or marketing your petition online. Petition.co.uk enables you to list your petition to active petition signatories so that you can gain a greater number of signatures and give your petition greater weight.