3 Tweets That Took Politics by Storm

No, this is not about 45’s tweetstorms. There is a world of political social media commentary that exists outside of his tiny-sized hands.

Social media has gained an increased presence in almost every facet of our lives. It touches every industry, not the least of which, is the world of politics. Platforms like Twitter provide an opportunity for once sheltered office-seekers to now connect with millions of campaign followers with the push of the button. This ease of connecting can increase access to the candidate, but can also lead to moments that take the internet by storm. Below are a few of these moments:

During the campaign, 45 posted a criticism of President Obama’s endorsement of Secretary Clinton. With her response, Clinton sent out the one of the most popular political tweets of all time. While the Clinton camp wasn’t the originator of this phrase, they certainly made it theirs in 2016.

In 2015, the battle in South Carolina waged over an aged symbol of racism. In a debate where lines were drawn largely on along political lines former Republican Presidential nominee, Mitt Romney broke ranks with this tweet. The confederate flag was later removed from the capital ground.

The political use of social media is far from just an American phenomenon. As the Syrian war raged and American politicians fiercely debated the appropriate solution, newly-elected Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to Twitter. At the end of 2015, Trudeau announced the country’s position on accepting thousands of refugees, and largely cemented his vision for Canada’s future. 

Whether you’re running for President of the United States, city council, or taking a stand on an issue you care deeply about, it’s important to acknowledge social media’s impact in politics. When used wisely, you’ll reach thousands.

The Most Important Part of Your Field Campaign That You’re Not Doing

You’ve accomplished the unthinkable –  you converted a voter from an undecided one, to a vote you can count on in November. Expert level achieved! Now what?

Too many campaigns make the fatal mistake of just leaving the conversation at the voter’s doorstep. While you overcame the challenge of convincing a voter to support you, it’s only June and the election is five months away. In these months, there is plenty of time for this voter to either fall back in the undecided column, or even worse, still support your campaign but not show up to vote. If only you had a method to follow up with this voter that would help eliminate some of this drop-off. Lucky for you, we do.

The Follow Up Postcard is one of the best tools in a campaign’s toolkit. When utilized properly, this inexpensive method of communication yields a high return on the campaign’s investment. Below are a couple suggestions to remember when creating your Follow Up Postcard:


When designing this card, leave extra space for a personal note. If you had a conversation about something specific during your time with the voter, make sure to mention it here. There’s no better way to directly connect with a voter than showing them you were listening to their needs.


While the timeline for when you send these out is up to you, we recommend writing these postcards out soon after having the conversation with the voter. By drafting these soon after, the details of the exchange are still fresh and accurate.


In a campaign where every dollar counts, it’s up to the candidate and team to find opportunities where to save. Using the Follow Up Postcard is this type of opportunity. Where a typical piece of mail requires $0.49 of postage, the 4” x 6” postcard only needs $0.34. This difference can mean hundreds of dollars when sending out just a few thousand pieces.

How I Won My Race On A “10 Speed”

An Interview with Randy Weston

“What started as a tool for efficiency became a symbol.”

In some of the most conservative counties of the Buckeye State, a candidate with a “D” next to his name managed to unseat a Republican incumbent and subsequent challengers for the better part of a decade. Former State Representative and current Director of Political Action and Legislative Affairs for the Ohio Association of Public School Employees, Randy Weston sat down with Print for Progress to talk about some of the most important lessons he learned while running for office.


“While the candidate is the best person to talk to voters and raise money, a campaign takes the support of the entire family.”

Running a successful campaign must have buy in from everyone. The candidate needs to focus on two things – knocking on doors and raising money. Therefore, other family members will need to pitch in elsewhere. During the campaign Randy’s wife, Carolyn, would address the “Thank You” cards for Randy to sign every evening, and prepare the following day’s walk lists. Even his brothers and extended family would pitch in on helping on the farm or mowing the lawn so Randy would be free to spend time where it was needed most – on the doors or raising money.


“The first month of the campaign, I would just introduce myself and then listen.”

Absent polling or focus groups, campaigns can get a pulse of the district simply by listening to neighbors and voters. In Randy’s first campaign, people were eager to tell him exactly what they thought was wrong with the current representation. These frustrations molded what eventually served as his campaign slogan, “It’s Time for a Change!” “Had I not taken this time to really listen to voters, I may have missed the level of frustration that was clearly on voters’ minds.” It’s important to hear what voters care about, not just assume the issues you want to campaign on are important to all.


“While targeting and the use of direct mail are important, nothing can replace the value from talking to people one-on-one.”

Campaigns of today have a variety of tools to choose from – tools that can target voters so precisely that every person can be served a different message. While the use of this technology should be embraced, nothing can replicate the personal one-on-one conversations that are had at a voter’s doorstep. These interactions go beyond the words spoken. Going from one house to the next represents a willingness to put in the tough work to get the job done. Voters recognize this hard work and understand this attitude will serve them well.


“Over the years, I’ve run into people who voted for me, and I have yet to hear someone say, ‘I voted for you because I agreed with you on a specific issue.’”

People like to vote for someone they can relate to, and someone who will work for them. Voters can quickly overlook the fact that you may not see eye-to-eye on every issue if they think you’ll go to work every day for their district. Be the candidate who goes the extra mile, works the extra hour, and really listens to the concerns of the people, this authenticity and perseverance may get you votes from unexpected places.


“I knew by walking I could cover 12 houses per hour, but on a bike, I could get to 17. On my way home one day, I picked up a used bike. Little did I know this bike would take on a greater meaning.”

Opportunities can present themselves in many ways to campaigns and candidates. You must be ready to take advantage of them as they arise. What started as a tool for efficiency to cover more ground, the bicycle in Randy’s race quickly became more of a symbol for hard work, being environmentally conscience, and a recognizable feature that showed his willingness to earn people’s votes. While each campaign may encounter its own unique opportunity, it’s important to recognize and take these opportunities to stand out to voters.


3 Reasons You’re Not Winning Your Neighbors’ Votes

Those powerful few minutes can quickly determine a voter’s decision. The time you spend at a neighbor’s doorstep talking about why you’re running and explain how you can improve their lives is crucial to securing their vote. However, after the conversation has ended, the palm card you leave behind serves as a reminder and lasting impression from your conversation.

Why your palm card isn’t helping with their vote:

They Don’t Remember You

Three items that need to be on your palm card bold and frequently are your name as it will appear on the ballot, office you’re seeking, and the election date. When voters head to the polls to cast their ballot it’s important to make sure they recognize your name, know where to find you on the ballot, and know when you’re up for election. The bolder and more frequent you can have these items on your palm card the better the chances they’ll have of remembering and voting for you.

You’re Trying To Fit In Everything  

A mistake that most campaigns suffer from is trying to squeeze every piece of information about the candidate on a 4” x 9” piece of literature. It just won’t work. When trying to cram all the information you think voters should know about you, you lose their attention and results in less being read. Keep the information short and simple on your palm card and let your conversation fill in the details.

They’ve Seen It Before

During the height of campaign season, voters are overwhelmed with candidates vying for their attention. To stand out from the crowd, be unique. This uniqueness can come from using a non-traditional color scheme, using photos that depict you or your family in a natural setting, or giving some information that sets you apart. This uniqueness will help translate into votes.

By designing a palm card that steers away from these common fouls, you’re on your way to securing more votes.


Is Lack of Efficiency Sinking Your Campaign?

Time equals money. For campaigns, time also equals votes. Every moment you’re not moving your campaign closer to your fundraising or voter contact goals you’re losing time to your opponent. Make sure you’re following the three principles to ensure your campaign is performing with a high level of efficiency.

Be Organized

While this may sound like a given, campaigns can suffer from a lack of clear and concise organization. It is imperative in a constantly changing environment to be able to make quick and informed decisions. With everything that is on the campaign’s plate it is irresponsible to think that one person can efficiently make every decision. Rather delegating responsibility to the appropriate team member and establishing a strong chain of command will pay dividends for both your campaign staff and organization. We encourage you to develop this organization early on, write it down so you can frequently reflect on it, but remain flexible to accommodate ever-changing campaign conditions.

Make the Most of Your Outreach

Make sure you’re fully committed to a method of outreach. Anything worth your valuable time, should be taken seriously. When considering mail or door-to-door opportunities, target voters to maximize results and track results so to ensure you efforts aren’t wasted. Take the time to train volunteers and staff, so their time as ambassadors of the campaign is utilized as efficiently as the candidate’s. It takes a team to make campaigns successful, so make sure they are given the tools and tips to succeed. Spending time communicating with voters is valuable, but if people aren’t communicating your message successfully, then these efforts are for naught.

Streamline Purchases

Much like efficiency with your organization and outreach efforts, purchasing campaign materials is an opportunity to become more efficient with your time and money. How and where this money is spent is a matter of public record, so your supporters and opposition alike will be paying close attention. To be efficient with your valuable campaign dollars, we recommend planning ahead and ordering items together whenever possible. By making fewer, larger orders, you generally receive a quantity discount and pay less per piece. Also, the time that is saved placing dozens of orders is time that can be spent talking to voters and raising money.