You’ve spent last year finding a candidate, pulling papers, and doing all of the major preliminary work for 2016. A campaign year is an extremely busy year. Most campaigns, whether local or national, will be pulled in a thousand different directions. Make no mistake, operating a successful campaign is organized chaos. So how do you keep the campaign on the rails and stay organized until November?
Every state has different rules about how candidates might initially appear on the ballot on Election Day. What is universal in all states’ across the country though is that candidates must gather and collect signatures from neighbors, supporters, and friends who reside in the district. These signatures essentially serve as a petition from local citizens to the state or municipality asking that your name appear on the ballot.
Over the years, I’ve worked with hundreds of candidates for public office. The one thing these candidates all have in common is that without fail, they wish their campaigns had more money to spend on ads, grassroots activity, and get out the vote efforts. No matter how much the campaign has raised, the candidate and his or her advisors dream about what they could do with just a little more money.
As you know, direct mail marketing is only one of many impression mediums that are essential to running a successful political campaign. There are many other tools used to get your message directly to voters including digital channels like email, display ads, telephone calls and text messages, and even television and online videos.
While all of these methods should be leveraged, we’re happy to inform you that even in the digital era direct mail is alive and well! In fact, it should account for around 30% of your impression mix. Here are some tips to help you set realistic expectations and get the most out of your efforts.
If you’ve been keeping up with Campaign Now, you know that we are strong advocates for diversifying your fundraising strategy and doing it well. By going a little further than adding an exclamation mark to your logo, you can gain people’s attention, keep them interested, and turn them into donors.
Jeff Schultz holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin. He began volunteering for political campaigns in the early 2000s and has been working in politics professionally for over seven years as a coordinator, consultant, and manager. Jeff got into politics just as social media and online donations became an essential piece of the campaign puzzle. We appreciate his insight into what makes a strong fundraising strategy and campaign.