Campaign Integration In the Cloud: A Must Have in a High-Tech, Interconnected World!
If you’ve been involved in campaigns for any length of time, you’ve had to deal with the nightmare of running campaigns by spreadsheet!
Remember the chore of trying to track a hundred and one different spreadsheets for fundraising, volunteer, and voter functions – all being manipulated and edited by different campaign workers! You lived with a deathly fear of losing your important documents. How do you organize all those different spreadsheets on your computer. Maybe you’ve had a computer that crashed and you lost all your data!
From Spreadsheets to Multiple Online Programs
Times have changed, but are you operating at an optimum level? Maybe you’ve taken advantage of the revolution in the cloud, but you’re still not operating at peak efficiency. You’re working with 3 or more different online campaign solutions, but they’re not integrated.
It’s time for integration – in the cloud! With the development of cloud based campaign platforms, the days of confusion and inefficiency are becoming a distant memory.
6 Benefits of Going Online with your Campaign Platform
1. Voter Data is now the true center of the campaign – During the campaign cycle, you are learning to “push and pull” voters through the engagement process – from apathy to support and active engagement. Your platform can and should build all functionality around voter records. As you “touch” a voter – whether through online or offline activities – those interactions becomes part of the voter record. You now can measure progress with a voter OR a group of voters.
2. Integration and efficiency in voter contact activities – Voter identification, persuasion and turnout programs are a huge part of the equation. Your online platform will increase your efficiency with these programs by allowing you to integrate and append data in a voter record – real time! Custom reporting functions allow you to drill down for status reports on each of these stages in the voter engagement process. If you’ve done a good job in identifying your supporters, your online platform should be your biggest friend with early voting and Election Day GOTV activities as you’ll have centralized lists of voters that you need to turnout to vote.
3. Process and Task Management – There are a lot of great project management tools out in the cloud. When it comes to your platform, there are probably built in project management features, but some platforms – through API technology – allow you to “plugin” your existing PM programs into the platform. Assigning tasks, setting deadline and reporting functions are all part of good execution. Your platform should help you increase the campaign’s efficient by integrating project management features with all your campaign functions.
4. Staff and Volunteer Management – You now have the ability to integrate your staff and volunteers into your platform. No more chasing down volunteer lists or staff phone numbers. All that information is on the platform and can be used at a push of a button. You also have the ability to assign tasks to staff and volunteers and manage the process online. Your platform allows you to create an access / permission hierarchy for users. You have different levels of campaign staff. Key strategists. Department directors. Mid-level staffers. Volunteers. Their access to confidential voter information and reporting functions should be appropriate to the level of their tasks.
5. Donor and Fundraising Management – There are a lot of expensive and fancy fundraising programs on the market, but how nice would it be to have all the information on your donors integrated into your voter platform? Whether you need information for campaign finance reports OR fundraising functions, an online platform allows you to seamlessly integrate this into your campaign activities. Most platforms have online fundraising functionality built right into your website.
6. Online Engagement – Your website is part of the platform and facilitates online engagement activities. The platform also allows individual voter records to be linked with social media and email accounts. This linkage opens up a world of opportunities for engaging with voters online – AND being able to measure and report that engagement.
Cloud Based Platforms are Revolutionizing Campaigns
The progression in campaigns from spreadsheets to cloud-based integrated platforms is democratizing sophistication in the political process. Whether you’re a small local campaign or a big-time statewide operation, you have the ability to fully integrate all campaign functions to facilitate peak efficiency.
Fully integrated online platforms are still developing – higher levels sophistication may still require some customization and coding – but the basic online platforms are now within reach of every level of political campaigns.
What hasn’t changed with the technological revolution in campaigns is the requirement to take the time to understand AND implement new technology. A fully integrated platform is more than just a few clicks of the mouse.
IT’S YOUR TURN:
Over the last few years, we’ve been studying online platforms. Below are three companies that provide campaign platforms. Spend an hour to visit the online campaign platform vendor websites listed in the below. We’d love to hear from you on your experiences with taking your campaign online. Please use the comments section below.
Here are a few vendors (on the conservative side) that provide voter platforms for political and issue advocacy campaigns.