The power of personal contact in political campaigns

Arnie Graf, Barack Obama’s inspiration as a community campaigning and now an advisor to the Labour Party, today tells The Observer:

In one ward in Lancashire, Labour identifiers were 33% likely to vote if you never contacted them. If you contact them once it goes up to 45%, if you contact them twice it goes up to 65%. Contact them three times and it rises to 75%. You need an army out there, and that is why we are trying to do a lot of community campaigning right now…

If you don’t have the ground game, you don’t have people to use the data. The value of social media and Facebook is diminished.

The full piece, including the differences between campaigning in the US and the UK is well worth a read, although it misses some of the most important trans-Atlantic differences, especially regarding the electoral register.

One response to “The power of personal contact in political campaigns”

  1. I am  a great fan of face to face contact. Many years ago we won a seat in a three member ward ( other two Conservative) our victor then failed to attend any meeting and thrown off the council. We worked and worked, canvassing and re canvassing until we had almost a 100% contact rate with electors. We held the seat in the by-election with an increase in vote. Many local members had wanted to give up as they thought we would get a thrashing, but it showed face to face contact cannot be beaten to build data and polling day information 🙂

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