Hard to believe we are at the beginning of a new year again and while many are making resolutions to be better versions of ourselves, the top political consultants are busy taking calls from the next Paul Ryan or Bernie Sanders. There is always a sense of panic amongst those considering running for office at the start of the year, it’s never too early to start we think, so why delay!
When we work with campaigns, the most important thing we see first is the vision of a candidate. This is where a campaign begins and ends. Having a vision is fundamentally what your election run is all about. Vision can be implemented in many ways, from your talking points when out on a canvass, to who you have on your team, and even, to what your social media strategy is. Here are our 3 major ways to get off on the right foot in 2017:
Analyze What Has Gone Wrong In The Past
Not to be negative, but looking at your failures is often the best place to start. If you have run for office before, you could actually be at an advantage second time around. Explore your entire campaign strategy from your previous efforts, analyze what worked, what was a waste of money/time and begin the cut. If you didn’t canvass areas first time around, get out there and get people to recognize your face. Insert yourself at various events and introduce yourself. Tell them about your interest in representing them and explain your reasons.
If this is your first venture into the world of politics, don’t panic. Thanks to the internet and social media, you can easily find materials to help you get started. Read other stories and case studies of how candidates are now grappling with technology to get a leg up on the competition. Take a trial with Ecanvasser to ease your way into constituency management and overall campaign management.
Build Your Team, Every Member Is Important
While the vision starts with one candidate, politics and campaigning are ultimately a team sport. For a long time, the people pulling the strings in a campaign would have remained largely unknown but nowadays, the consultants, the analysts, and the campaign managers are all crucial players. It is helpful that all these individuals now have outlets where they can not only advocate on behalf of the candidate they work with, but they can also carry on the conversation with supporters. Conveying ongoing conversations can be seen simply on a Twitter thread or even getting members of the campaign team to send out emails and signing them individually. We find this works particular well in larger campaigns where it just isn't possible for the candidate to be at the end of every email. The supporters know that this isn’t realistic so transparency is appreciated. Getting an email from the social media coordinator or the canvassing director could prove equally as important in the long run.
Research your voters
Knowing your voters is pretty useful. Obvious isn’t it?
We worked with Victoria Napolitano last year who was re-elected to Moorestown Town Council. She attributed her success to knocking on over 5,000 doors when she first ran, back in 2012, to become the youngest Mayor in the Town’s history at 26, “when I started my campaign, I was virtually unknown. Canvassing gave me the opportunity to meet thousands of people face to face, and they remembered me when election day came.”
Talking to people, be it in person or through social media, is the best way to find out what makes your electorate tick. We find the best way to understand what your voters want is to canvass and then canvass again. People change their minds all the time and taking votes for granted is what happened to some of the major political players in 2016. Keep your finger on the pulse and you won’t be left surprised come polling day.
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