It sounds simple, but to win an election, you must get more votes than the next best competitor. That means that your strategy must accomplish that simple but often difficult goal. No one can guarantee a win, no matter how great a consultant they are or how great a candidate you are. However, here are five things to do to put you in the best position to win.
1. Recruit a winning team
This does not mean going out and hiring a consultant and/or campaign manager, though we certainly recommend it! Instead, before you file your paperwork to run, know who your ride-or-die, go-to friends are. Who can you count on to do whatever it takes to win? Who will make phone calls, walk blocks, and strong-arm their friends and colleagues into giving you money and voting for you? If you don’t have this core group, then it will be difficult to find electoral success.
2. Know your vote goal
How many votes is it going to take to win? This information can be put together by looking at previous election results, which should be published by the local elections office or even in media outlets. Once you have this information, you can make a determination if it is feasible to garner enough support to get 50% plus one vote in a majority vote race or a plurality if the election does not require a majority vote.
3. Develop a finance plan
This tip is two-fold. First, you must develop a budget for how much it will cost to woo the number of voters you determined you need in Step 2. Then, you need to brainstorm your list of friends and contacts to see if you’ll have the financial resources to make your budget. How much are you willing to give or loan to your campaign? How many $500 friends do you have? How many $1,000? So on and so forth…
4. Establish your message
If you reach this step, then you have determined it is feasible to win this election. Congratulations – you know you have the team and the resources to at least make it a competitive race. Now, you need to develop your message. Why do you want to pursue this office? What are your qualifications? How have you already served the community where you hope to hold elected office? What will you do if you are elected? How are you different from the other candidates? These are all questions a good consultant can help you answer.
5. Put in the work!
Now, it’s time to make your message known. And that happens through (1) a compelling website, push cards, mailers, etc. (i.e., the kinds of things a political marketing firm like us will handle for you), and through (2) getting out and talking with potential voters. This means block walking, attending events, participating in voter forums, and more. Going back to the beginning – your goal is to get more of your voters out than the next best candidate, which will take a lot of work.
A campaign can seem overwhelming when you look at it as one big undertaking, but by breaking it down into pieces and doing the right foundational work up front, you can be successful. Reach out now, and we can help you create your step-by-step strategy to take the mystery out of the process and put you in a position to win!