It goes without saying, running a political campaign isn’t easy. One of the most difficult aspects of these activities is maintaining a good relationship with your voters and supporters or anyone who has the potential to become one.
Organization of this information is key, and while many people find it best to input all this info into an excel spreadsheet it is far from ideal. This is where you will need to familiarize yourself with Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and the array of products and programs that specialize in CRM.
A CRM is an efficient, centralized way to build and manage your network of customers.
Thanks to modern technology, online CRMs can be used by your campaign to organize and share vital information. Contact information, related accounts, leads, and interactions with your customers across all levels of your organization are just a few examples. Using a dedicated CRM will eliminate the problem of maintaining multiple separate data spreadsheets, many of which are not designed to interact with each other.
Which CRM is best for me?
Your political campaign needs a CRM. Think about it, you’ve spent months on the campaign trail, gaining supporters, winning over voters, making phone calls and canvasing neighborhoods. You collected a lot of great data on all those people you interacted with. You don’t just want all that info to go to waste, you want to maintain it and track interactions with these new or potential customers to keep them engaged and involved in your current and future endeavors.
The features, support, and pricing of a specific CRM product is definitely going to play a large role in which is going to work best for you. Some CRMs specialize in functionality for business, some for political campaigns, and some for nonprofit organizations, so it is necessary to do a little research on what program is going to offer the best CRM for your organization. Let's look at a few of the really good ones.
Salesforce is definitely the industry standard of CRMs. It has been around since 1999, and has refined the CRM process over that time. It comes at a higher cost than other services, but is unrivaled in quality, service, and support. It can support built in integration with nearly any conceivable online service. It is an ideal CRM for state executives and parties, and national level representative candidates.
Pipedrive is a great, easy to use CRM that would be ideal for any political campaign for someone running at the state level and below, right down to local level elections. It is a very affordable, powerful, and well supported CRM. The start up process is also very quick; you can get up and running in very short order.
Hubspot is a terrific CRM and marketing platform, that seamlessly integrates marketing and sales. It is most efective when focused on digital and email marketing. Hubspot offers different pricing tiers based on the number of contacts you log in your CRM. It allows you to build and edit content for a website easily, as well as migrate your website into Hubspot to track web traffic and SEO metrics. You can even manage and track your social media posts and outreach through Hubspot's social features.
Don’t let social media replace a proper CRM
The temptation is definitely out there to let modern social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ take over your customer interactions. While you should be using these platforms to extend your outreach, a good CRM program needs to be used to track these and other connections. A good CRM system is going to replicate the effects of these popular social media sites, by connecting people, their activities, and their relationships, and provide a focus on growing your campaign’s influence and outreach.
Like a business, political campaigns should put the “customer” first. This cannot be done more effectively than it is when your campaign implements a good CRM to know what makes each customer stand out from the next. Start maximizing your interactions with your supporters and get the most out of your relationship with them with a proper Customer Relationship Manager today.