Social Media Toolkit

Social Media has become one of the most valuable tools to get your message to the lawmakers who have the power to affect the lives of people living with kidney disease. YOU can talk directly to the people making decisions about your life!

It’s easy to follow them on every social media platform where they have a presence. Twitter being the most popular platform out of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. If you don’t have an account, you can sign up and start posting in less than 5 minutes.

We’ve compiled a few tips and tools to make it easy to follow and communicate with your representatives via social media. Check back often to stay informed of any changes to previously introduced legislation and/or to see if new legislation has been introduced.

Time to get proactive!

Facebook (FB) Tips

Twitter Tips

Instagram (IG) Tips

Be sure to follow/like the FB pages of your Senators and House members, that way any news they post about kidney-related initiatives will come up in your newsfeed.

Post about legislation, kidney health, or anything else that you want them to see, on your Facebook page and tag them in the posts. Most Members of Congress do not allow direct posts on their FB page but will allow posts on the Community page within their page, or some allow direct contact through.

As with FB, follow them in order to not miss any critical legislative tweets. Tweet them or mention them in your tweets with their Twitter handle or a hashtag with their name. You have many options: you can share an image with or without text, or a link to a web page or article. Not using text in your post leaves room for more hashtags and tagging. If you use text, just make sure it doesn’t exceed Twitter’s limit of 280 characters. Use bit.ly.com to help make it shorter if needed.

IG is mostly used to share photos and short videos, and more Congress members have taken to the platform recently. It uses most of the same rules as Twitter, so tag your reps in anything you post.

You can’t share actual website links on Instagram. And every post must have an image or video. So you may only be communicating with elected officials in comments on this platform. But that still works!

Hashtag Use Guidelines
Including the right Twitter or Instagram hashtags on your posts guarantees more eyes will see them. Hashtags – a combination of letters, numbers (and sometimes emojis) after the symbol # categorize content and make it easier to find. Anyone who clicks on a hashtag or searches for that hashtag or an included word, will see all the posts tagged with it, so they make your post easier to find by people looking for information on the same subject. So using strong and effective hashtags on Twitter gets the most visibility. And use as many as you’d like provided they fit within Twitter’s 280 character limit.

Here are the most popular hashtags being used to engage in online discussion about kidney disease, kidney transplants, kidney donation, dialysis and living with chronic kidney disease (CKD) or end stage renal disease (ESRD) – whether you capitalize words or not, the same information will appear (i.e., #KidneyDisease vs #kidneydisease):

#Kidneys
#KidneyDisease
#Dialysis
#CKD
#ESRD
#Renal
#RenalHealth
#KidneyHealth
#KidneyDonor
#KidneyTransplant

RSN invites you to also use the hashtag #RSNhope and be sure to tag us @RSNhope to help us connect with you and follow your engagement with the renal community and to lawmakers. You can also try legislative hashtags, for example: #HR2710

Tag Your State Congress Members
Tag your Representatives and Senators in your posts to garner their attention and give more exposure to your posts. To tag your Senators, copy and paste their handles into your post or type them manually using the @ symbol and their handle letters (no space between the @ and the letters, example @rsnhope).

Follow the format below for the best visibility on each social media platform. Feel free to copy and paste or write your own message.

General Tweets to Share
Support the current legislation that affects people with kidney disease and living donors http://ow.ly/RIAw50upaIr #kidneydisease @RSNhope

American Healthcare Related Tweets
Protect access to health insurance for people with pre-existing conditions #AHA #KidneyDisease @RSNhope

People with #kidneydisease deserve affordability and comprehensive coverage #AHA @RSNhope

General Facebook Post
Over 1 in 10 individuals in the U.S. has kidney disease and more than 20 million Americans are at risk of developing it and don’t know it. Please support legislation to protect people who have kidney disease and living donors.

American Healthcare Related Posts
People with #kidneydisease deserve affordability and comprehensive coverage #ACA #KidneyDisease via @RSNhope