Campaign Management: Campaign Plan Writing Tips

Seek Advice

Find people who have run for office before (party officials, the Caucus, former elected officials, consultants, etc). Use their knowledge of terrain, costs, and strategies to avoid making costly mistakes.

There's No I in Team

Writing a campaign plan is not a job for the candidate alone. Invite your "kitchen cabinet" (spouse, staff, trusted leaders/political insiders) to a series of organized, goal-oriented planning sessions to map out your campaign plan.

Start With Your Timeline

The timeline will serve as the foundation for your entire plan. Use large wall calendars to show all key dates, such as the filing deadline and primary election, as a group. Then overlay the calendars with important events (family birthdays, holidays, the first day of school, the County Fair, etc). Then, work backward from Election Day to plot your hiring, fundraising, voter contact, and media benchmarks.

Break it Down

Deal with each component of your plan separately, either as a group or individually. Separate the areas into: voter contact, fundraising, message development, and earned and paid media. Combine each of these areas and overlay to complete the entire plan.

Keep it Consistent

Your strategies in each area of your plan should support the other areas, as well as your overall goals. Avoid any activity that does not directly support your ultimate goal of getting 50%+1. There are no resources to waste!

Stick to It

The plan is your most important campaign tool; if it's not written down it doesn't exist. Use it to keep you focused, guide your use of time and money, and keep you on track in case of the inevitable bumps in the road.