To be successful political candidate you need to fundraise.
And many times you’re going to need to raise money fast..
That’s often the case for a good many of my clients and I’ve told them the same thing I’m about to tell you.
Believe it or not, there’s a way you can raise $10,000 really fast — potentially in an hour and a half.
The Man Who Taught Me This Technique
This method for raising a large amount of campaign funds fast is one that is tried and true. I learned it from one of my political mentors, Steve Kinney.
Steve had a great career in politics, working with the likes of California Governors George Deukmajian, Pete Wilson, and State Treasurer Matt Fong. Before he made the emphasis of his political work polling, Steve was a prominent fundraiser.
It was Steve who taught me this incredible fundraising method.
As is discussed in another article, too many candidates waste money by having fundraising events that cost more money than they bring in once all the expenses have been paid.
I’ve actually seen candidates lose money from fundraising events.
You can’t afford it to happen if you’re serious about winning your race.
The Fastest Way to Raise Campaign Funds
Instead of holding a fundraising event, you need to schedule a fundraising meeting – either at breakfast or lunch.
It should be in a restaurant with a private and/or a banquet room. You will want the privacy, as will your donors.
The room should have a table that seats 10 to 15 people, but no more than 15 people. The first time you try this, I suggest only having 10 people attend.
The breakfast or lunch should take place during the work week. Why? Because it’s easier to get people to these meetings than if you were to schedule it at night or on the weekend.
If it’s a breakfast, don’t schedule it on a Monday. If it’s a lunch, don’t schedule it on a Friday. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are always your best bet for getting people to a fundraiser.
Since you are only going to invite 10 to 15 people to this event, you’re not going to send out formal invitations. You’re not even the person who’s going to be doing that inviting.
That will be done by a prominent person who is supporting your campaign. They will technically be hosting the breakfast or lunch, but your campaign will be covering the associated costs, which in this case is limited to the food the invitees order.
Who is this prominent person?
It’s someone you know or who you’ve been connected with as a candidate. If you’ve done the Back of the Envelope Fundraising to jump start your campaign, that person probably came off that list.
This prominent person supporting you and serving as the host needs to be a person who can and will write at least a $1,000 check for your campaign.
They also need to know people who can and will give you a donation of at least $1,000 as well. The host is typically a local business owner, labor leader, or political figure of some stature.
Your grandmother who might give you $1,000 out of your pending inheritance is probably not a good person to have serve as a host. Unless she can get 10 other people there who will also give $1,000 to your campaign, don’t ask her to host such a meeting.
What you need to keep in mind is that only people who can easily give your campaign $1,000 are invited to this exclusive breakfast or lunch meeting.
Not only is that crucial, so is the fact that whoever the host invites is someone that will donate $1,000 by the time the meeting is over. Your host should already have the pump primed for you when the invitation is made.
At the breakfast or lunch, you and the host sit next to each other.
Once the orders are taken, the host introduces you to the rest of the attendees. There should be 10 or there including the host. Again keep it limited to 10 if this is your first time doing it
After the orders are taken, you make a quick presentation about who you are and why you are running.
You then go around the table allowing each attendee to say who they are, what they do, and then allow them to ask a question of you.
You start with the host to get things rolling, then move on to the person beside your host. Most people don’t mind talking about themselves and their accomplishments.
And a group like this will gladly do it, so this will get them talking. They will then ask you a question and you field it, then move on to the next person.
By the time everyone has spoken and asked you a question, the food should have been served and eaten, and you’ve gotten to know a room full of prominent people you didn’t know before.
More importantly, they’ve gotten to know you and what you plan to do once you’re elected.
When the questioning has made it’s way around the room and back to you, this is the host’s time to shine.
He or she will address the invited attendees, say they loved what they heard from you, and are writing a $1,000 check for your campaign right there. They will also encourage everyone else to do the same right then and there.
If all ten attendees give $1,000, your campaign just raised $10,000 at a breakfast or lunch meeting that shouldn’t last more than an hour and a half.
At the same time, your only expenses were the costs of the food that was eaten. If that comes up to $200, your campaign just cleared $9,800 — without paying a fundraiser a cent in commission!
That’s not a bad way to spend a morning or afternoon, is it?
Since the host personally knows and invited all of the attendees, it should have been made clear when the invitation was made that checks would be collected by the conclusion of the meeting.
If someone wants to support you, but needs to send you the money via the mail or online, thank them for the commitment and their support.
Should the committed donation not arrive within a week, have your host follow up to collect directly.
Variations on This Method
Now you don’t need to ask for $1,000. You may need to ask for less if there are extremely tight contribution limits where you are running.
Or you may need to ask for more if you’re running in a big race. If there are contribution limits, it’s best to have the host ask everyone to “max out” to you by making the largest donation legally allowable.
If you’re running in a small race, you can consider dropping the amount you’re asking from each person to $500, or even $250. I wouldn’t go below that or you won’t cover the cost of the food.
Just don’t low ball yourself because you’re afraid to make the ask. That’s a sure fire way to leave money on the table that could have gone to your campaign.
The goal is to raise a large amount of campaign money fast.
10 people giving you $1,000 raises you $10,000 fast. If you pulled off five such fundraising meetings, your campaign could quickly raise $50,000 – which is plenty of money to complete in almost any local jurisdiction in America.
Don’t believe this method will work for you?
Try it out and follow this blueprint exactly as I’ve described it. You’ll probably be surprised by the amazing fundraising results you see.
In fact, Matt Fong who ran for the United States Senate in California against Barbara Boxer in 1998 funded his campaign almost entirely with these types of meetings.
Steve Kinney knew what he was doing.
He passed this knowledge on to me, and now I’m giving it to you. I hope you’ll apply this method to your fundraising in your campaign for elected office.
Are you Ready to Jump Start Your Fundraising?
Small group meetings are only one component of successful political campaign fundraising
If you’re ready to learn more and take your political campaign fundraising to the next level, tap this link to get instant access to the Jump Start Your Fundraising premium course for only $49.