We talk a lot about planning and strategizing before elections because we have seen first-hand that it works.
Have you formed your election strategy? Have you dedicated time to each and every component of your campaign?
We touch base daily with many active campaigners, some professional and many more attempting their first run. The best of these guys follow the same simple template:
Think about your issues
First things first, consider why you are choosing to run for office. Do you understand the political landscape in your area? If you can justify a run and have legitimate concerns then people will support you.
Jon Ossoff was a candidate in the 2017 special election to represent Georgia's 6th Congressional District. He qualified for the runoff election on April 18, 2017, receiving 48.1 percent of the vote, but was defeated by Republican Karen Handel on June 20, 2017, by a margin of approximately 3 points.
The following issues were listed on Ossoff's campaign website:
Our Economy: Jon is a small business owner, executive, and entrepreneur — the CEO of a company that produces documentaries investigating organized crime and political corruption. He knows what it means to grow a company, meet a payroll, and balance budgets. Jon has a Master’s degree from the London School of Economics, where he specialized in trade relations between the US and China.
Health Care: It is in our strong national interest that every American have quality, affordable health care. Whether it’s a newborn just home from the hospital, a mother battling cancer, or a veteran returned from overseas, our health isn’t negotiable. Our quality of life, our strength, and our prosperity depend on it.
Civil Liberties & Civil Rights: Throughout our history, patriots, abolitionists, civil libertarians, suffragettes, and civil rights heroes have made huge sacrifices to advance liberty and justice for all. We should continue striving together toward a perfect union. Jon will fight for our civil liberties to ensure that every American is free to determine the course of their own life so long as they don’t harm others. Jon will oppose cynical attempts by politicians to win elections by undermining Americans’ hard-fought, sacred voting rights.
Women’s Health & Planned Parenthood: Jon will defend women’s access to contraception and a woman’s right to choose and fight any legislation or executive action that would allow insurance companies to discriminate against women.
National Security: Jon is a former national security professional who understands the threats America faces and the complexity of international politics. When he was a national security staffer on Capitol Hill, Jon held a top secret security clearance and worked with our military and intelligence community to keep Georgians safe. In Congress, Jon will push for a tough, smart foreign policy that protects our national security while avoiding reckless, destabilizing missteps like the Iraq War.
As you can see Jon placed himself at the center of each issue but he also placed himself as a solution. Talk about how you will tackle them when elected, but even more importantly begin implementing strategies and initiatives to tackle them now.
Build a solid team
Candidates can’t succeed by only backing themselves, they will need a solid support base to back them too. One vote can quickly turn to ten if the right people are in your corner.
Recruit early and recruit in areas where you may not be particularly strong, be that digital work, PR or community outreach. You need passionate, but organized individuals. You will also need a team of canvassers. These people are the most valuable and they are the faces of your campaigns.
Even if the race you are running in is a small one and won’t garner much media attention you still need to be able to sell yourself. What’s great about 2018 is that you can create a buzz like never before, you can control your narrative thanks to brilliant new features on Facebook and Instagram such as their live broadcast tools. This allows you to reach the living rooms of your voters easily and believe me when I say, we’ve only just scratched the surface when it comes to live-streaming.
The trick to becoming a great public speaker is always being turned on and believing in what you are saying. Most politicians have confidence but it's making sure this confidence is delivered in a relatable manner is what sometimes proves tricky.
Become comfortable in front of a mic and an audience and you'll be ready to tackle nearly any obstacle.
Last week I emailed a woman who was running for office in 2018. She was campaigning on issues that we had recently covered in a blog piece so I decided to share it with her in case it may be of help. Her reply was frank and sharp - “I don’t have time for this, I am trying to win”.
At first, I admired her determination but after a few minutes I thought to myself, “Yes, you do have time to read this!”
Now, the blog piece in question may have been no benefit to her but if she was taking that approach to everyone offering her help then she was certainly damaging her chances of winning. There are so many avenues we can examine to better our effort at victory in 2018 and beyond that, we have to be willing to at least try.
Speaking of taking a helping hand, are you interested in setting up a call to see if we at Ecanvasser can help you this campaign season?