Tips for Tabling
Tabling is a great way to get into the community and find people who are interested in your campaign. Here are some ideas for maximizing your engagement with tabling. CCL Community also has an article on tabling with more detail on the “what to say.”
When and Where to Have a Table
Tabling can be done at any time of year, but you want to aim for times when you are most likely to reach your target audience. This includes the student activities fair, Earth Day, and career fair. Reach out to the organizers a semester ahead of time to make sure you get a spot. Find a spot where you can be near other similar organizations and where traffic is heaviest.
What do you want to achieve at this tabling event? Having a clear idea will help you organize your materials and your conversation. Are you looking to:
- Find members to join your group?
- Collect letters or petition signatures?
- Build your mailing list?
- Get people to come to your next event?
- Educate people about Carbon Fee and Dividend?
Your conversation should build up to the most important ask.
What to Have at the Table
You want to have enough at your table to draw interest, but not so much that it looks cluttered. Start with a clean table cloth. Get a large banner with “Citizens’ Climate Lobby” printed on it. You may be able to borrow a CCL banner from a local CCL chapter (find one here), or print your own using templates from https://community.citizensclimatelobby.org/resource/banner-2/.
The basic informational flyers are CCL’s info sheet, and the Carbon Fee and Dividend info sheet. These should be in color, and you can have just a few copies for people to look at on the table but not take with them. You should also have a flyer with information about your group and your next meeting/event. These you can make quarter paged black and white with many copies that people can take with them. If you’re looking to recruit a Campus Leader, you should also have the Student Leadership Opportunities Flyer and the Presidents Endorsements Flyer. All these are available from the Campus Leaders Resources Folder. Postcards, business cards, and more are available at https://community.citizensclimatelobby.org/resource/banner-2/#
You also want to have a sign-up sheet. It’s easiest if you create a google form and have people sign up through a laptop or phone. You can also have a paper sign-up sheet and type it up later. Make sure you get their name, phone number, and email. Invite people to join your social media on the spot. If you’re collecting signatures for a petition, that could double as your sign-up sheet.
Have some engaging visuals. You can print photos from the Carbon Pricing Student Testimonials Project and put it on a board. You can play the slide show on a laptop. You can create artwork that represents climate action. Our Climate’s salmon mosaic and maple mosaic are good examples. Climate Toothpaste has some interesting products. Take a look also at CCL’s store for shirts, buttons, water bottles, bumper stickers, and more.
Put out some “goodies”: candy, fruit, cheese and crackers, etc.
What to Wear
How your team members present themselves makes a big difference on how your group is perceived. Wearing CCL gear will make you look official and cohesive. If youare not wearing CCL gear, a business casual outfit signals that you are professional. Avoid outfits that are too casual, provocative, or have logos from other organizations. You can get gear at CCL’s store.
What to Say
Engage people with a welcoming attitude, open posture, and asking questions. Here are some starters:
- “Hi! Do you care about climate change?”
- “Why do you care (or not care) about climate change?”
- “Would you like to hear about an effective solution to climate change?”
- “Would you like to sign a letter on climate action for your member of Congress?”
Give them the elevator CCL pitch. For example, “Citizens’ Climate Lobby is a nonprofit grassroots advocacy organization that empowers citizens to become advocates for climate policy solutions. We build political will so that members of Congress can take action on climate change. We have over 450 chapters across the United States, including one in this campus/town/community, and we meet every Wednesday at 7pm. Would you like to join our mailing list?”
Remember to smile and shake hands!
Climate Action Photo Booth
In addition to letters and sign-up sheets, a climate action photo booth is a great way to engage visitors to your table and accomplish some advocacy.
Create a google slide deck using the template in our testimonials presentation.
Create some signs that people can hold up:
“I support putting a price on carbon.”
“Take action on climate change!”
“Climate change is real.”
“Youth for climate justice.”
“There is no planet B.”
Have a white board where people can write their name.
Have the student(s) hold up the sign and white board.
Take their picture with your phone or camera.
Make sure their name or a number is in their photo as well as on their information slide so you can match them up later.
Have them fill out a testimonials form (in Campus Leaders Resources Folder) or google slide.
Upload your photos to the google slides.
Some guidelines for taking good photos:
- A brightly colored and simple backdrop will look better than a plain white one.
- Make sure your space is well lit, from the front, not the back.
- Wipe your camera lens before you begin.
- Use flash if you’re in a dark space.
- Get photos of students individually and in groups.
- Table cloth
- CCL info flyer
- Carbon Fee and Dividend info flyer
- Your meeting/event flyer
- Sign-up sheet/petition
- Constituent letters and endorsement letters
- Business cards
- CCL shirts and pins
- White board
- Testimonials form
Download CCL flyers from the Campus Leader Resources Folder
After your event, don’t forget to follow up! Contact the people who joined your mailing list as soon as possible. Schedule meetings with those who volunteered to help. Upload your photos and deliver letters to your member of Congress. Also, fill out a field report so that CCL has a record of your event.