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We are Line Kristensen and Flore Blondel-Goupil, NationBuilder Account Managers based in the London office. 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.

My name is Jackie and I’m running for office. I’ve been a teacher and a leader of my community for many years and I want to continue this journey to better serve the people and causes I care about as an elected official.  

I have a little less than a year to win my election. That will require building a solid digital infrastructure, running issue-based campaigns and engaging with people on the ground leading up to the election.

I’ve chosen to run my campaign on NationBuilder because it gives me the tools to effectively build my community, know who my supporters are, and engage with them to drive action. Their team has been helpful in getting my team onboard and conscious of the right steps to follow to get our campaign up and running.

1. The technical setup process

I got my account last week and went through the first steps of onboarding. After installing my nation, I attached my domain to the nation in order to get ready to send emails. Next, I created permission sets to distribute leadership to my team, and to give them access the sections of the software they need. For instance, Hanna, my campaign manager, will have admin access because she needs to oversee everything. The volunteers will only have access to the people who are assigned to them and will be able to create email blasts but not send, so the communication team can give sign-off.

2. Setting our strategy and working backwards

Crucially, the team and I started to put together our campaign plan and key milestones. It took us a lot of time and coffee to get there!

Like most campaigns, we started with our end goal—winning the election, and then created a plan by working backwards. That allowed us to determine how many volunteers we need to recruit, the numbers of events to organise and how much money we need to raise.

Here is the timeline we agreed:

Month

Focus

D-300

Webpage launch

D-270

Start weekly newsletter

D-240

Start volunteer programme

D-210

Start fundraising

D-180

Launch survey

D-120

Campaign launch

D-90

Announce Events

D-60

Launch Ambassador programme

D-30

GOTV

With the overall campaign plan in mind, I set up my goals in the control panel. Here’s is what that looks like:

Running for office is tough and a lot of work— so much so, that it can feel overwhelming at times. I feel grateful to have a supportive team of people willing to join me in this journey and put their time and effort into my campaign. I’m really excited about what’s coming next: creating and publishing my website to share a compelling message with my future constituents. More to come!

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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