RUN #4: Fundraising in the Time of COVID-19

July 28, 2020

What’s at the top of the list for running a successful campaign for office? According to Kristin Walker of Three Elephant Public Relations, it’s the exact thing that makes many people most uncomfortable.

Raising money!

In a fast-paced presentation for ESPC’s fourth RUN Wyoming training session, “Fundraising in the Age of COVID,” Kristin drew on her years of experience with national and statewide campaigns to demystify the process of asking for money. 

One key tip? Fundraising doesn’t need to be scary! If donors connect with your message, they’ll want to support you. They just need to be asked—ideally for a specific amount.

Kristin also advised candidates to:

  • Get organized. Find a fundraising committee chair—someone who’s great with spreadsheets and lists. Then develop a budget and work with your team to figure out where the funds will come from. Friends and family are an easy place to start—but don’t stop there.
  • Make it easy for donors to give. Does your website have a prominent DONATE button? Do your emails include a link to donate online? Do you have a way to accept credit card payments in person? If not, you’re leaving money on the table. 
  • Get creative about meeting potential donors. With COVID making traditional indoor events unfeasible, consider outdoor picnics or multiple one-on-one gatherings in a day. 

Kristin’s last piece of advice for candidates? Spend the money you raise! The day after the election, she said, “You want to wake up with a win and zero dollars.” 

Want more great lessons about running for office in Wyoming?

Join us Monday, August 3, at 5 p.m. for “Lessons Learned on the Campaign Trail.” We’ll hear from Wyoming State Auditor Kristi Racines, former Majority Floor Leader Rosie Berger, former Minority Floor Leader Mary Throne, and former State Senator Bernadine Craft. Register right here!

Run Wyoming is made possible thanks to the Cynthia Hogan Foundation and their dedication to the next generation of Wyoming leaders.

This free, nonpartisan online leadership training led by all women experts and panelists began July 6 and is running for six weeks every Monday from 5-6 p.m. All current and future candidates and leaders, especially women, are encouraged to attend. Attend all six to receive a candidate certification from ESPC!

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