How to Raise Money For a Local Political Campaign

Online fundraisingWithout a doubt, one of the most unfortunate parts of being a candidate in a local political campaign is the necessity of raising money from donors. Asking contributors to give money to your campaign can be a very uncomfortable thing to do for a new candidate, but winning your local election is much easier if you have enough money in the bank. While it might be difficult for you to get used to asking for donations, there are some simple tips you can use to make the process easier.

First, kickoff your campaign and raise some initial seed money by putting on your first fundraiser in your home and limiting it to close friends and family. You might not have a huge number of people attend, but it should help you get a few dollars in your campaign account to pay for your initial expenses. Let your attendees know that they can donate whatever amount they want, no matter how small, and make it an informal, fun event. In addition to the money you raise, you’ll get some great support and encouragement that will help you as you get ready to hit the campaign trail.

Following your initial home fundraiser, your next local political campaign fundraising effort should be contribution request letter to local voters who you think might be willing to donate to your campaign. People in the same political party, voters who signed your nominating petitions, and people you know personally are all good prospects for raising money. Send them a form letter requesting that they send what they can afford, and include a self-addressed envelope that they can send their donation back to you in. While postage for these types of bulk mailers can be expensive, you should be able to make up the mailing costs with just a few donations, and even if people don’t donate, this is another good way to get your name out in the community.

Your last formal fundraising event should be held later in the campaign season, preferably in the last month before the election, and should be at a local venue. You can plan to have it open to the public, and be sure to invite all of the dozens and dozens of people who you have met over the course of the long campaign. It’s best to put a dollar amount on tickets for this even, say fifteen to twenty-five dollars, and let attendees know what they will be getting for their money: food, drinks, whatever it is. Start selling your tickets weeks in advance of the event, and you will probably be surprised at the large number of people who end up attending.

Remember: fundraising might not be fun to do in a local political campaign, but it’s a necessity that will get easier to do with time. If you do go on to win your local election, make sure that you hold at least one annual fundraiser every year to keep your campaign bank account flush with money and to stay in touch with your contributors and supporters.

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