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First look at 2008 presidential email campaigns

By None:

Over at Political Gastronomica, blogger and author Sanford Dickert notices that the volume of emails from putative presidential candidates is starting to pick up -- but not all email efforts are equal.

But, what seems to be missing from some ... is a succinct, engaging narrative that poses a problem that is solved by our involvement. Getting us to engage and invest in the solution makes us stronger supporters in the long run.

I have to give credit to some of the players - like BlueStateDigital (behind the emails from Rod Smith) and Mayfield Strategies (behind the content from Hillary, Cantwell, Casey and others) - they are generating well-written and engaging content.

What worries me is that others - like Bayh, Biden and Feingold - who are trying to position themselves for the upcoming fight - are not winning the discourse. They are getting missives out there - but little engagement. Where are the real problems that we could solve with you - the candidates?

This is a great point. The purpose of email broadcasting is NOT to engage in cheap, easy, fast one-way political messaging.

Rather, email should be engaging. (Frankly, everything you do should be engaging, but let's get the email right first.) There should be a compelling reason for folks to get your email -- tell stories, engage folks, ask them to get involved in meaningful ways.

Above all else, think of your folks as "people" not "subscribers".

Related tips on P&T:
Build engagement by surveying your supporters
Still recruiting volunteers on the phone?
Now that's a compelling action alert email
How do you build your email list?
Post-election email strategy
Be Disciplined with Email