People Are Searching for Your Political Campaign Online; Do You Have Your Digital Ducks in a Row?
From a small, local candidate race for city council to a statewide campaign, every political campaign needs to have a digital presence these days. It’s easy, cheap and one of the best ways to stay engaged with your supporters. Here are five things we think every political campaign should be doing digitally for 2020 (and beyond)
1. Website: Everyone has a website, so don’t let your political campaign be left behind. Gone are the days of websites costing thousands of dollars to build out. There are tons of really cost-effective platforms out there that allow you to host your site and even design it in a fun and creative way. The most important tip for 2020: make sure your online content is mobile-friendly. So many people are spending their time online using their mobile devices and if your content isn’t readable on mobile, people will just move on. This is especially important for all links you include on your site—donation pages, sign up forms, and more.
2. Social Media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat… maybe even TikTok? All of these are free for you to use, so why not? They are a fun, interactive way to communicate with your supporter base (who—spoiler alert—are already spending all their time on these platforms anyway). People love to promote candidates or causes they care about on these platforms, so make sure you’re in the mix. Beyond just being present on these platforms, make sure you customize your online content to fit seamlessly into them. If your political campaign is putting out video content, make sure it can be easily viewed in Instagram, for example. And of course, make sure it’s mobile-friendly!
3. Digital Fundraising: Digital fundraising is a zillion times cheaper than other forms of fundraising (this is an accurate statistic, don’t worry). And many times, all it takes is adding a link to your website where people can donate. The trick is, you need to make sure that link is visible and easily accessible to people. You can also utilize your social media pages to drive supporters to fundraising links. Donors these days are savvy, so make sure your donation pages are mobile-friendly and easy to manage. Have you ever tried to purchase something online but been put off by the form being more suited for a desktop? It can result in the loss of a sale or donation! As with all other aspects of your political campaign strategy, you should think of this from your supporter’s point of view. Make it as easy as possible for them to support your campaign! It could be the difference between a not so successful quarter and a great one.
4. Digital Campaign Supporters: Building campaign supporters is key to a successful political campaign. And since everyone is viewing content online, you should be building a base of support online as well. There are a few ways you can do this. First you can use your social media sites to increase your followers. Secondly, you can take advantage of online petition tools like Care2 to promote an issue that is important to you. This will help you gain supporters who are specifically interested in an issue you represent, or even better, in your campaign. Once you have a base of supporters, you should be sending out regular email communication to keep them engaged. This is a great way to encourage your supporters to donate, volunteer, and get out the vote for you on Election Day.
5. Digital Advertising: Digital advertising is incredibly cost-effective and really easy to manage. From Facebook ads to Google search ads, you can start out simple and expand to more advanced ads as you grow. Using digital ads to bring in more supporters and/or to raise money is a great way to take advantage of the digital tools available these days. Digital advertising is scalable and flexible and can work for any size political campaign.
These are just starting points for your political campaign. If you want to check out even more, click here for 9 Political Campaign Tips.