Campaign Corner: Is there such a thing as too many leaflets?

Berrylands Focus leaflet for Sushila Abraham

It’s a common question about Lib Dem campaigning, especially when debating the virtues of online and offline campaigning: are we delivering too many leaflets?

Here are four factors to consider in answering it:

1. People vary greatly in their interest in leaflets and toleration of them, which means that if nobody is complaining then you are doing less than the most intolerant person likes to receive – and far less than the average person is happy to receive.

2. Complaints about quantity often mask problems with quality – people think there are too many leaflets because they find them boring, irrelevant or both. When people are interested in something, they are willing to read huge amounts about it. But they need to find it interesting.

3. The typical leaflet gets only a few seconds consideration from a member of the public – so you need to do a lot of leaflets to get anything more than the merest sliver of information over.

4. There is lots of evidence (example 1, example 2, example 3) even from more recent years after the rise of social media, about just how well leaflets continue to work.

So yes, it is possible to do too many just as it is (in theory, so people tell me) possible to eat too much chocolate.

But beware the occurrence of people who think too many leaflets are being delivered because they have not thought through these considerations first rather than because there really are too many leaflets being delivered.

As for how to deliver leaflets, take a look at my video.


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