To build the local party, pay attention to yard signs

Political party partyIf you are involved in your local political party, you know that you’re lucky if you get the list of volunteers from campaigns after the election is over.  Particularly for presidential campaigns or other top of the ticket candidates, the field staff isn’t local and leaves soon after the election.  Your only connection to the list is gone!

With that said, if you are canvassing in your community during the fall, general election campaign season, you will see yard signs for candidates at the top of the ticket.  Cross reference these addresses with your list of volunteers and if there isn’t a match, be sure to canvass for their home.  Strike up a conversation and figure out, first, why they are volunteering or excited about the particular candidate.

Once you understand what motivates the voter, use this information to energize the voter to become involved in the local party year round.  Maybe they care about a particular issue.  You can use this information to explain how the local party is an advocate for the issue or how the potential volunteer could spearhead an effort related to the issue working through the local party.

With that said, you also know that a lot of people come out of the woodwork during the presidential election that you won’t see again for another four years.  Use commonsense when reaching out to people.  You may not be able to turn someone with a presidential candidate yard in their lawn into a great volunteer but you will be able to begin the process.

Try a soft ask such as putting them on your local mailing list or asking them if they are willing to help on Election Day.  You will be surprised how many people who are helping a particular candidate will be willing to help the entire ticket on Election Day!

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