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Mandate Media: Digital Strategy for People Changing the World
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Post-election email strategy

So, the election is over, the office is packed up, and the staff diaspora is underway. What do you do with your most valuable electronic asset - your email list?

No surprise, folks: You keep working it. Whether you won or lost, if there's an election in your future (even a maybe), it's critical to stay in touch with your supporters. Fortunately, email is an easy and inexpensive way to do it.

But, you've got to start now. Right now. Email lists tend to decay at a rate of about 3% a month. If you do nothing, in just one year, a solid 30% of your list will be bad. In sixteen months (about when filing day 2006 happens), about 38% of your list will be bad. Don't let that happen to you.

Let folks know what you're up to. If you won, update them on your successes as an elected official. If you lost, keep 'em up to date on what others (and you, outside) are doing about the issues that mattered in your campaign.

John Kerry, for example, recently sent an email to his three million supporters about electoral reform. (Hat tip to the folks at Johns Hopkins for the pointer.)

Over at Campaign Superstore (a GOP web consultancy), they've pointed out that it's never too early to start building a large and effective email list of supporters.

So, while you're busy running the government or plotting your return to power, keep feeding that campaign email database the contacts of everyone you meet. Every month, when addresses go bad, call 'em up and get the new one. And most of all, keep in touch with people. They'll appreciate it.