So, you’ve decided that you want to run for office.
This is a very personal and in depth process where you’re putting your name on the ballot and sacrificing your privacy to help make your community a better place to live, work and raise a family.
It’s your name on the committee, the yard signs, the campaign website, in the newspaper and it’s you who is standing in front of the cameras and audiences expressing your opinions on different issues that face your neighbors.
With all that said, the most important thing for any candidate to remember is that your campaign isn’t about you.
I know, I know. That’s counterintuitive.
If it’s not about you, then why is it my name, my privacy and my reputation on the line?
Campaigns are about the voters, not the candidates.
Because almost every campaign becomes a choice between the candidates running, voters struggle to decide who is the best person to represent their interests.
Every successful candidate ultimately makes their campaign about the voters and not themselves.
Candidates ask me all the time, “How do I make my campaign stand out?”
My answer to that is simply, “put the needs of the voter (specifically your target or ideal voter) first.”
You’re probably thinking, what does that mean?
It means, discussing the issues that voters want to discuss. This doesn’t mean you change your positions or be disingenuous; it just means you don’t go to a gun rights group and discuss climate change.
If you make your campaign about the voter instead of making it about you, you’re more likely to win. So putting yourself second isn’t just humility, it’s good campaign strategy.