In his 2016 Presidential campaign Bernie Sanders raised more than 200 million dollars in political contributions. Most of it came from small donors who responded to his email appeals. His haul from small donors was more than twice that of Hillary Clinton.
In this video, how he did it.
This is what made it work. Sanders had a unique message. The money he raised early in the campaign he reinvested in building his e-mail list and finding even more donors—renting and buying lists of contributors who had given to other left of center candidates.
Sanders stayed in the news, used the news coverage and high profile endorsements to validate his message and enhance his credibility. He used his social media platforms to drive people to his website—and made it easy for visitors to share their email address. On his website he made it easy for people to volunteer and contribute to his campaign. He repeatedly asked those who shared their email address for money, often for as little as a dollar. He updated his donors constantly on news about the campaign. His emails were well written and rich with graphics and photos. When people made political contributions he invited them to ask their friends to do the same.
This is one of the enduring lesson for candidates running for office. If you want to raise money on line, you can. Look at the Sander blueprint. Offer a passionate message. Do it passionately. With conviction and authenticity. Believe in your cause. Stay in the news. Use social media to drive people to your website. Ask for small donations. Keep your contributors updated. Use pictures and graphics to touch hearts. It is not rocket science.
And one other thing. I was also on the Trump and Clinton email list. Both sent me a lot of boilerplate blather. Sanders, on the other hand told stories, had pithy subject lines, and they were a joy to read. If you are going to hire a company to help you raise money on-line from political contributions, make sure they have someone in their shop that knows how to write.
This issue is just one of several topics I have covered in my new My New E-book, “10 Timeless Lessons from the 2016 election.” IT’S FREE.
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Political consultant Jay Townsend works with smart, passionate candidates who want to run for office, win elections and make a difference. He has successfully helped candidates learn how to run for the U.S. Senate, how to run for Congress, how to run for Mayor and develop a winning campaign marketing strategy.
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