Start Early; Ask Often by Dotty LeMieux

By at March 9, 2015 | 11:28 am | Print

Start Early; Ask Often by Dotty LeMieux

Dotty LeMieux 2013

If you’re planning a run in 2015, now is the time to start your campaign. How do you start? First, of course you decide what office you are running for. Do your homework. Who else might be running? Will it be an open seat? What issues might be coming up?

Start attending meetings of the body you want to join, if you are not already doing so. Who on this body are you aligned with? Who might represent another viewpoint? Who are the allies of each group?

Look up the campaign financial filings to see how much it costs to run for this office. See who has donated to various candidates in the past. These are people you might to ask for contributions.

Now is the time to start putting together your campaign team. Make sure you talk to your family. Are they going to be solidly behind you? Think about the time away from them on the campaign trail and while serving in office.  will they actively help you? make phone calls, walk precincts when the time is ripe?

Start asking your family, your friends and associates, your work colleagues, your old college classmates, to support your campaign. Ask them to pledge, if not donate outright now. (When you start taking donations, know the rules in your district; are there contribution limits? Are you allowed to actually raise money before you file?) You will need a bank account dedicated to the campaign and a good treasurer, even for a small race; someone familiar with campaign deadlines and regulations.

Once you start getting pledges of support and money, you are on the way. Remember what they say “Early money is like yeast; it makes the bread rise.” You are the bread. Your supporters are your yeast. Once they have donated, they will do so again. They will bring others along. The campaign will start to grow and snowball and you will look like a winner.

So start now, lay a good foundation and you will be in shape come Election Day.

Dotty E. LeMieux runs GreenDog Campaigns, a full service consulting firm in northern California.  Dotty’s advice has taken women and first time candidates to victory in tough elections.   She also gives training seminars to candidates and their staffs and is available for consultations with groups and campaign teams. Dotty has taught a course in Practical Politics at the College of Marin and trained activists for groups such as The Sierra Club, Democratic Party, National Women’s Political Caucus, Emerge California and others.  She has been called a “grassroots maven” by Christine Pelosi, author of Campaign Boot Camp and Campaign Boot Camp 2.0 and is quoted extensively in those popular “how to” campaign books.

See her new blog for recipes for success on the campaign trail!  The Campaign Cookbook

Green Dog Campaigns           8 Willow Street         San Rafael, CA 94901



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