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In every campaign, it is important to understand who your voters are and what data they have shared with you outside of their role as a voter. This is even more important in a world when engaging with your voters in person is not always possible. The key is being smarter with the data you collect, instead of just collecting more of it. Campaign teams that succeed know exactly why they need each data set they collect and how it will be invaluable to their campaign.
Make sense of the data you have, analyze it, and aggregate it to paint a more complete picture of the voters behind your database. After all, it’s the individuals behind the data that matter the most—whether they are voters, supporters or volunteers.
Here are some important questions to think about when you are planning your virtual field program.
- What are your target demographics?
- Which precincts have the highest turnout?
- Do you need to collect additional data consent to communicate with your supporters?
- Which issues do your supporters care most about?
- Who are the supporters you can distribute leadership to?
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Tactics to communicate with your voters
Conducting voter identification without being able to talk to voters in person may seem daunting, but it can be done. It’s vital to engage with voters where they are; some may respond on social media platforms, others may respond to calls or texts, and let’s not forget the age-old strategy of email outreach. All of these tools will enable you to have one-to-one and one-to-many conversations—and each of these interactions need to reflect the data you know about your voters.
Personalization is key. Though this one is fairly obvious, it’s worth mentioning because it’s a tactic many campaigns still seem to struggle with. Voters are smarter than they have ever been, and they expect a personalized experience from the websites they visit, to the emails they receive. To keep their attention, every communication must feel tailored and uniquely designed for them.
Reflect back to your voters what they have done to support your campaign and what you need them to do next. This will increase their trust in your message. Using tools that allow you to make dynamic asks based on historic engagement is not just a nice-to-have, but a necessity for voter engagement.
Give voters virtual ways to participate
While communicating with your voters has shifted toward virtual spaces, and rallies, sign holdings, and knock-your-block canvass launches less of a possibility—there are still ways you can do these things digitally.
While having voters participate digitally right now is a must—it’s definitely not a new concept. Voters have become familiar with virtual tools to connect over the past few years as options have expanded for working from home, hosting virtual events, and more. Before you cancel any in-person events you already had on the calendar, think creatively about how you can transform your content for virtual consumption. You can view our tactics and strategies on how to host virtual events here.
Make more leaders
Think about the ladders of engagement you want your voters to engage with throughout your campaign. For example, what are the steps necessary to turn a supporter into a volunteer or a volunteer into a donor? Once you have these steps in place, you will be able to create paths for your voters that help your campaign to build trust and create leaders within your supporter base.
People trust the leaders in their community, and when your candidate can’t be out on the road, it is vital to have your supporters act as local surrogates to keep voters engaged. By distributing leadership throughout your supporters you are increasing your ability to communicate with voters directly.