Who Are You And Why Are You Running?

If you are the only candidate in your race, then you don’t really need to clearly articulate who you are and why you are running. For everyone else, however, this is a critical first step. If you can get this message down on paper in a concise statement, it makes everything that comes after—building your website, planning your advertising, designing brochures, fundraising and even your day-to-day operations—much easier to plan and execute.

There is another reason why it is important for you to sharpen the definition of your campaign. In 2012, there will be thousands of candidates running for office. Not all of them will be on the ballot with you, but all of these candidates compete for money, media coverage and voter attention. The guy running for U.S. Senate may not have any connection to your race for city council, but he is probably asking for money from your voters and he will be the person hogging the media spotlight.

With more and more blockbuster federal races reaching out across the country for financial support, you could very well find yourself competing with candidates from other states for campaign contributions and for the attention of activists.

For most of the media covering political campaigns, the attention starts at the top of the ticket and works its way down. In 2012, the professional journalists and top-tier bloggers will be focusing on the presidential race and a handful of campaigns for the House and Senate. Eventually, the media will work its way down the ticket and your race stands a chance of earning some coverage. But that’s not likely to happen for a while.

Read more from Steve Pearson and Ford O'Connell at Campaigns & Elections Magazine

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published this page in In The News 2012-02-10 09:00:00 -0500
Analysis & Political Strategy