You may have seen the story on the local news… “Roll of Dice Decides Webster City Council Race“. And yes, it is exactly as appears. Two candidates vying for a seat on Webster City Council tied in their election. Texas state law offers 3 options for breaking such a tie: a run-off election (fairly pointless in a race that is already only 2 people and would likely end in another tie), a roll of the dice, and a coin flip. And so, the candidates in Webster met and rolled their dice to see who would serve on council. Strange as this may seem, it is not completely unusual.
A google search of elections decided by coin toss yielded several returns including, “West Texas Election Decided by Coin Toss“. There are also a long list of elections that were eventually decided by less than a handful of votes (in many cases even one or two votes). And we’ve all heard stories of candidates who went to bed on election night thinking they had won (or lost) the election, only to wake up the next morning to learn that just the opposite had happened once all of the late boxes and absentee ballots were counted. Since in a two-person race it only takes +1 vote to win, a win is a win whether it be decided by one vote, coin toss or roll of the dice!
There are no guarantees in elections. Any outcome is possible on any given day. That is the very nature of democracy — the choice of the people. But at the end of the day, you want to KNOW you did everything you could to win. Otherwise, why are you running in the first place? Don’t leave your election to chance. Here are a few things you can do to improve your chances of winning your election:
Meet Your Constituents
Attend local events and meet people. We’re not talking about the political events that are flooded with other candidates (and almost exclusively other candidates). You need to get out, shake hands, and enjoy real community events filled with voters. Remember, they are not there to spend their day talking with you. But it’s a great way to build name recognition and give folks some insight into who you are.
Knock On Doors
A strong walklist can be customized to include only the folks most likely to vote in your election, or parts of your area with specific concerns that need to be addressed. Face time can be invaluable; and don’t forget pushcards or something to leave for them to remember you by.
Reach Out By Mail
As an efficient tool for speaking to all of your voters, it’s tough to beat direct mail. It is an excellent way to build name and platform recognition while driving voters to your website to learn more about you. Direct mail can be sent directly to homes who have a history of voting and is an unintrusive way to speak with your constituents when it is convenient for them.
Be Careful With Robocalls
I don’t know about you, but my cellphone rings constantly during election cycles with robocalls from political surveys and campaign messages. I must admit, I hung up on every one of them. And judging by comments I've seen in social media, I'm not the only one who feels a bit bombarded by robocalls. While any list can be appended to include phone numbers, be aware that this may have a negative impact if voters feel harassed or bothered by the calls. It would be one thing if you were the only person sending political robocalls, but that is likely not the case.
Just a few things to keep in mind as you develop your political marketing strategy. Hope they help! Feel free to give us a call at 281.633.9797 if we can assist you. Best of luck in your campaign!