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We are Lison Laissus and Oliver Wells, NationBuilder Account Managers based in London. Having worked with many political parties and campaigns, we want to share what we’ve learned for people new to the process. This series is a step-by-step journey of a fictional candidate running for office, informed by our shared experience.

Dear Diary,

After the very successful phone banking session we had last month, it’s time to enter the last phase of my campaign. Ahead of planning my GOTV efforts, I’d like to set up an ambassador program to amplify my message and maximize my reach. My objective is to use my supporters’ word of mouth to help persuade anyone who’s on the fence to vote for me.

Identifying the most influential supporters

While asking for volunteers, I also asked if anyone was interested in helping with my social media efforts. These people have been tagged in my nation so that I can see them on a list when needed. 

However, I want to cast my net a bit wider, so I am also going to look at my database and see if anyone else might be suitable for this type of volunteer work. I’m going to start by looking for people who are volunteers, are emailable, and have a significant number of Twitter followers by using the filter below:

I’m also going to target people who are volunteers, are emailable, and have interacted with my Facebook page with the filter below:

By applying appropriate tags on their profiles, I’ll be able to easily reach out to them but also display personalised and adapted asks in my communications to meet them where they are. 

Onboarding them as ambassadors

After identifying my target audience, I drafted an email to invite them all to be a part of the programme. I’ve decided to hold an online event for anyone interested, in which I will cover my campaign pledges, answer any questions, and have my team outline relevant content and how best to share that content with friends and family. 

I’m going to create a path to easily follow who has expressed interest, joined the event, and completed the volunteer request. This will make it easier for me to move them to action and show my gratitude afterward.

My path will contain the following steps:

  • Potential Ambassador tagged
  • Received online briefing invitation
  • RSVPed to online briefing
  • Attended online briefing
  • Received tool kit
  • Completed campaign ask
  • Received thank you email

Equipping them with the right tools

After the event, every ambassador is given their own recruiter link so we can also track the number of people they recruit to pledge to vote. To do this, I will create unique links toward my pledge page by appending the following Liquid snippet after the URL:{{}}. It will automatically include the recipient’s NationBuilder ID.

To make it really easy for them, I’ll include share buttons for different platforms, with pre-written messages including hashtags and their unique link.

I will also include a link to a webpage  where they can download pre-created visuals to help make their post more visually engaging.

Measuring the results 

As part of tracking how everyone is getting on, we have created a private leaderboard that ambassadors can access. The board is automatically refreshed to see who is converting the most supporters on behalf of the campaign and foster friendly competition.

It will also help follow up with those who have not yet completed the ask, and encourage those who are contributing the most. When the campaign is over, I’ll update my path and make sure to get back to everyone who participated to thank them, as well as invite them to my end-of-campaign celebration if I end up winning! 

I look forward to seeing the results. Stay tuned!

- Jackie

If you want to run your campaign on NationBuilder, create a free trial or get in touch with our team.

For more on how NationBuilder can help emerging candidates and parties, learn how Emmanuel Macron’s party En Marche used it to get 359 candidates elected in 2017.



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