European Law Monitor

Make your voice heard!

Lobbying Hints & Tips

Be polite and considerate: it seems obvious, but it helps!

Build Coalitions: the more people you can get on your side, the better.

Concise: get your message across in one page of letter or 15 minutes of meeting. If a legislator wants more info, they will ask.

Context: is what you ask for feasible, realistic and does it fit in the current political and economic climate ?

Follow up: if you have committed to find out more on an issue, do so and remember to let the legislator know. Follow up with any new information which might come to light.

´Getting to know them´: knowing even a little about your Member of the European Parliament will help. What is their background and area of interest ?

Know your subject: the legislator won´t necessarily have as much experience as you in your own area of work. Be clear and explain any technical points. If you don´t know something, don´t make it up, get back to them.

Letters: are a key way of getting your message across. Don´t be afraid to write to your Member of the European Parliament, to the European Commission or to your national Ministry.

Listen: you may gather a whole range of clues as to the way legislation is likely to develop, who are the supporters or opponents, and what the timelines are likely to be.

Persist: ´Rome was not built in a day´ • and nor was a good piece of legislation. Don´t expect instant results. The messages and relationships you build over time will probably deliver more.

Prioritise: what are your specific goals and targets. What do you really want to change and what would be a ´nice to have´ ?

The Message: Be clear, concise, explicit.

Target: remember to pass the appropriate message to the right person at the right time.

Timing: It is KEY to know whom to target at what time. A word of warning. We have seen several campaigns fail on a simple point of procedure. Any information must reach the relevant officials • civil servants or MEPs • BEFORE the vote has taken place. It seems obvious, but the day of the vote may not be the deadline for final changes.

Renia Coghlan has 10 years experience in lobbying and advocacy in EU affairs. She has been based in London, Brussels and Geneva. For further information please contact