Here we are, 3 months after the October 14, 2008 election. All those long evenings of door knocking, delivering flyers and pounding the phones are a fast receding memory. You’ve probably hung up the gloves, and are wondering, with a little dread, if you’re going to be out doing it again in another couple of months. Or maybe you’ve been bitten by the bug, and you are starting to think that the Green Party of Canada has an historic role to fulfill, and you’re wondering what can be done to run a really effective campaign next time?
I’ve stressed before that politics needs to be fun, and that retaining and involving people in between elections is the key to your success in the next election. I’ve said before that hosting a regular monthly Pub night is a great way to keep everybody together in between elections. Just the act of sending a regular email to everybody letting them know that somethings going on will be enough to retain a degree of engagement. Many people will never come to a Pub night, until the media starts talking about the next election, then wham, bam, everybody shows up.
There is something extremely effective that can be done immediately that will have a great impact. I was taught about this by an old school Liberal, from whom I learned many things, some great, and others simply shockingly wicked. First of all, is the Candidate in your riding really committed to helping build the EDA? Perhaps your’ candidate has ambitions for the next municipal elections? Perhaps your’ EDA is consciously tag teaming between Federal and Provincial campaigns to build the supporter databases? Above all, is the candidate willing to invest a little time for an outstanding return? If you have any supporters lists at all, then this is the time to re-canvass the riding.
You’re probably thinking; ” Is blueblogger nuts?. We just got finished with a campaign, and he wants us out there canvassing again!” Well it’s not as daunting as it sounds. The job to get done is to straighten out all of the supporter lists that were generated in the campaign. You need to get every identified supporter into a poll by poll database, whether on a spreadsheet, or a more sophisticated database. Sort the identified supporters by street addresses, and get your’ ducks in a row. The Candidate will be going to the doors of all identified supporters in order to thank them personally for their support in the election. While at the door, the Candidate will ask them to continue their support in the future, and invite them to include their name, and email address in the pub night invitation list. Have something as a leave behind flyer, with the regular date and time of the Pub Night printed on it, and suggest they come along, and bring a friend for a purely social get together with some local Greens. For those who sound interested, have them join the Green Party. A piece of cake, and unless you have 10,000 I.D’d supporters, this will be doable over a couple of weeks.
No matter how big your’ EDA is, this is a fantastic tactic for growing the EDA. It’s not like you have to canvass huge numbers of people, because you’re only going after those supporters that you have already identified. I absolutely guarantee you that your’ canvass will be memorable for everybody that you talk to. You will have locked in many voters as Greens for life. Don’t cheap out and do this by telephone. That will have a marginal impact. You will need to get on it fairly quickly as well. If you wait until the spring, then many supporters will have forgotten that they ever promised to vote Green, and the impact will be greatly diminished. If we do end up having an early election, then you will be very fresh in their minds when you make your first telephone canvas to get signs and volunteers in place.
Filed under: 2008 Election, election readiness, Election Tactics, Organizing | Tagged: Canadian Election, election readiness, green party canada, Green Party of Canada, green party organizing, political organizing |