Running for Office? Revisit "Ready, Set, Go!"

by Joe Fuld (He/Him)

Running for Office

The Campaign E-Book Candidates Running for Office Need To Read!

Running for office or working on a campaign? Check out The Campaign Workshop's fifth e-book “Ready, Set, Go! Jumpstart Your Political Campaign.” As candidates all across the country are beginning their campaigns, we wanted to reintroduce you to some of the e-book highlights. 

Here are some highlights:

Why are you running for office?: Many candidates still can’t answer the question why they are running for office. If you aren't running with purpose, voters will sense it and go in a different direction.

Having a message:  Articulating a message of why people should vote for you is another key point of running for office.

Keep a consistent message: Having a message is great, but sticking with it is another thing entirely. Campaigns start with the best intentions but lack the discipline of maintaining a consistent message. This is especially important at the start of the campaign. A good message has to continue throughout the campaign.

Stretching resources: Campaigns have three main resources: people, time and money. How you use those resources can be the difference between winning and losing. Building a campaign is very much like putting together a plan for a business. Assessing resources, figuring out when you will have them and when you can utilize them is a big key to success.

Managing a budget: Campaign budget decisions have an emotional component that most business decisions don't have. When it comes to the campaign budget, we try and get folks to remove the emotion and really look at what they need to spend and when. Early spending mistakes, like spending a large percentage of your budget in the first month, can end a campaign. Make sure you tie your spending to a budget and a winning strategy in a written plan.

Building a team: Just like in business, in politics, who you hire is critically important to the success of your campaign. Picking the right people matters. However, a campaign staff can be tricky.  You have a mix of campaign staff consultants and volunteers.  Having a strong manager makes a big difference here. Candidates are not able to raise money and meet voters without the help of a strong manager.

Someone needs to be in charge: The candidate needs to be accountable for decisions, but they can't always be the one to make the day-to-day decisions. They have to have the right team, the right people, and the right structure to succeed. This book is about getting those steps together so you can have the foundation to be successful.

Have questions about running for office or managing a campaign? Check out our other e-books on campaign and advocacy tactics.