Every election season brings new characters to the table, returning representatives and the media’s often ridiculous, preferred pick.
We get invested in candidates and want to know all about their background story, which is only normal considering they will be acting as our de facto voice in government for the next couple of years if we choose to vote for them. The lines get blurred here, can this person do a job for the masses or will they simply be doing a job for themselves?
As a good politician, you must always do the former. This is why it is so important for a campaign team to focus on the voter and not the candidate.
The presence of a selfish political candidate isn't a new phenomenon and each election cycle will see a new one emerge. Here are some of the most common mistakes campaign teams make which allow their candidate to become more self-serving than public servant.
Weak Canvassing Game
A solid ground game is all we ask from you! Time and time again campaign teams undervalue the power of foot soldiers during election season. You are not only putting the candidate in the doorways of thousand of people, you are also instigating a movement which will bring volunteers and supporters into the inner circle and after all, two heads are better than one.
Going door to door is something that is expected from each candidate no matter what position they wish to hold. Canvassing is constantly being proven as the best way to garner support from your public. Not only are you being seen on the campaign trail, it also adds that 'man of the people' vibes which only help when the media will scrutinize you at every angle.
Not Engaging With The Voter
Refusing questions from the public at press conferences? Ignoring public messages from potential voters on Twitter or Facebook? Not showing up to constituency office hours?
This is a nightmare for any campaign team and it is notoriously hard to rectify if left untreated for a long time. Something that happens much too often is seeing a politician join Facebook, use it religiously as a forum for him to answer constituents concerns and then almost overnight disappear. The questions keep coming but the answers have stalled. This is why every campaign team now has a social media manager in place to run such accounts. The voter needs to be put first and feel like he or she is being heard.
Selling Your Own Agenda
Picture this: Donald Trump spoke at Bethel United Methodist Church during his visit to Flint, Michigan on Wednesday. An area currently dealing with a large-scale water contamination problem. Trump gave an awkward speech against a backdrop of his own bottled water Trump Ice. "Let them drink water", he proclaims, "Mine".
Pushing his own agenda towards an already angry audience will do little to garner him popularity, let alone votes come November.
Endorsements are tricky business. Sometimes your campaign team pleads with big, influencing figures for them (everyone wanted Elizabeth Warren), other times, people just give it.
Unfortunately, not all endorsements are born equal. More often than not you wish they had never mentioned your name in a tweet or broadcast their undying support on national radio. In August, the American Nazi Party chairman Rocky Suhayda endorsed Trump and proclaimed a Trump victory would be "a real opportunity" for white nationalists to unite and become more public with their views.
An endorsement like this, coming from a controversial source, even though not requested by the receiver can also damage a campaign. This is where it is important that a candidate puts them in a position to accept or to distance themselves from it.
No Long Term Goal
Is your campaign team tracking voter issues or do they not think that's important? Getting elected is only the start, you will have to answer to all your promises once you get into office. It is crucial you are keeping good, coherent records of all your constituents queries.
If you are interested in learning more about how Ecanvasser can help you avoid these mistakes, why not check us out below: