Using Facebook is incredibly complicated, scary, and absolutely essential for anyone running for public office. Especially if your running for a state or local seat.
This quickstart guide will walk you through the basics you need in order start connecting with more voters.
- In order to run Facebook ads that are political in nature, each person who will manage the Facebook ads will need to get verified.
- You will want to have a dedicated ad account setup using a credit card owned by the campaign.
- Once you are verified you will need to connect your Facebook ad account to your Facebook page with a paid for by disclaimer. Set it up by going to your Facebook page and clicking Settings in the top-right corner then click Authorizations in the left hand nav.
- Add ActionSprout to your Facebook page.
- Upgrade your ActionSprout account with a credit card or use an activation code provided to you by one of our political partners.
- Follow at least 40 pages in the Inspiration section of your ActionSprout account that post locally relevant stories about the issues you care about.
- Create a few saved audiences in the audiences section of your Facebook ad account that reflect the different segments of the voters you want to reach. For example 18-24 year old females who are single and very liberal.
- Export a list of people with phone numbers for the neighborhoods you're planning on canvassing from your voter database. Upload these as new custom audiences in the audience section of your Facebook ads account (the same place you created saved audiences).
Then make sure you do this every day
- Search your ActionSprout Inspiration section for stories that relate to issues you care about. Try and find at least two a day to share. Remember to add a message about why it matters and what you'll do about it if elected.
- Try and share at least one photo a day from your phone of the candidate or volunteers out in the community. Selfies with people at their home or at events are awesome.
- Review your Timeline section in ActionSprout for un-promoted posts and hit the promote button, choose "new campaign", select the audiences you want to see it, give it a budget and let it run for 3 days.
Some things to think about
- Heavily promote content to the custom audiences for neighborhoods you plan on canvassing in the next 2 weeks.
- Use the cost per reaction, share, link click metrics from your Facebook ads to understand which audience care about what topics.
- Make sure you "like" every comment people make and respond to as many as you can. Having conversation with a detractor is a great way to convert people and make sure that their friends see you having a civil dialog with their prickly friend ;).
- Plan on spending at least $10/day on Facebook ads, a good rule of thumb is $2/day for each 1,000 voters you want engaged.
- You can't start too early, don't wait until the last minute to run ads and post stories. Connections don't form overnight, if you want Facebook to work you need to be there everyday in their feeds everyday.