Running for political office has become a full-time job. With campaign season starting earlier and earlier, you need to be prepared for the journey you’ll go on as a political candidate. You also need to keep up with the times and embrace recent changes to the way campaigns are run. Digital platforms of all shapes and sizes influence the general public more than ever before. From TV ads and email campaigns to Facebook advertising, there are plenty of different ways to use the internet and digital spaces to push for your candidacy.
With these new digital spaces come new challenges. Malicious software and cybercriminals could be lurking around every corner waiting to hack your confidential information. You also have to present your information in creative ways online to gain traction and interest in your platforms. Also, remember that perfecting your digital spaces won’t come cheap. Running a digitally sound political campaign involves a lot of steps, so here are some tips to help you do so successfully.
Gear your website towards what you’re running for.
Building a website should be one of the first steps you take after announcing your candidacy. A way to cement your position and what you’re running for is to make your site geared toward that area. For example, judicial campaign websites may look much different than a site for someone running for school board or even state senate. Mold your campaign website off of your logo, personal information, endorsements, and past successes. A judicial candidate should share successful past cases, attachments of their credentials, and a plan for how they would operate in a judicial office. This way, people go into election day knowing exactly what you stand for, and they won’t forget your platform.
Focus on cybersecurity and stopping hackers.
The increase in digital platforms for political campaigns also increases your vulnerability to hackers and data breaches. Set up systems that can help protect against cybercriminals or phishing attacks. Professional hackers will use social engineering examples to exploit your staff members into giving up sensitive information. Don’t take the bait or fall for the scam. If an email is asking for private information, login credentials, or other sensitive data, chances are it isn’t legit. The best way to avoid this type of attack is to keep your guard up and train your staffers to do the same. You also may be able to install a firewall or spam filter to increase cybersecurity overall.
Try not to go too negative.
Unfortunately, politics can get really ugly really quickly. With so many different digital avenues out there through social network sites and more, it is very easy to go negative and simply bash your opponent. It may even get out of hand to the point where lies and rumors start to get spread. As you build a digital campaign, try to avoid negativity. Instead, be clear and concise about your platforms and the truths about your candidacy. The general public will respect a candidate who is honest and focuses on their strengths rather than the weaknesses of another individual’s behavior.
Allocate your funds appropriately.
A sound digital campaign requires money in many different areas. Political ads aren’t cheap, whether you’re putting them on TV or on someone’s social media page. With a higher demand for innovative websites and digital content, you’ll also need to hire new staffers and bring in extra volunteers. While a website can be an excellent tool for fundraising and getting people involved, it will cost money to maintain. Come up with a strategy of what digital investments will give you, as a candidate, the best chance to win your race and allocate your funds to those specific investments.