In recent years I’ve faced a certain amount of push back from candidates about making live calls for their campaigns.
They don’t think their effective. They don’t think people answer their phones anymore. They think live calls are a waste of money.
From my experience running campaigns and winning elections I can state clearly that their objections to live calls are wrong.
Telephone calls are one of the most effective ways to reach voters. Why’s this?
Because 97% of the Americans have telephones.
Whether they’ve stuck with their landline home phone, cut the cord, or gone solely to a cell phone — almost every voter has a phone they answer.
Many still have landlines in their homes. Yet, more people are using cell phones than ever before.
Mobile devices are the only telephone for many voters. It’s always with them and they answer it when when it rings, or at least check the voicemail that’s left for them.
According to Edison Research, in 2016 76% of Americans 12 and older owned smart phones. That’s approximately 207 million people!
Edison Research’s findings also show that 84% of Americans 25 thru 54 have smart phones, and 51% of Americans 55 and older have them.
That’s simply too big of a slice of the voting population for a candidate who’s serious about winning to ignore.
And if you’re only making robocalls, then you’re putting your campaign’s chances of winning at risk.
The Dangers of Robocalls
While I believe there can be a place for robocalls in a campaign, three major downsides exists for candidates strictly relying on them for your phone calling activity.
1. You could be breaking the law.
The Federal Government prohibits making robocalls to a cell phones and mobile devices. Campaigns that violate these regulations could face significant fines from the FCC.
2. You might be annoying the voters.
Plenty of voters are fed up with robocalls. They get over-whelmed by them during election season. I know a lot of people who hang up on the phone as soon as they realize it’s not a live person on the line.
3. You can’t persuade undecided voters to mark their ballots for you.
Robocalls are not a conversation, they are a broadcast. If you want to convince people to vote for you, you need to have a conversation. Robocalls are a one-way street and don’t persuade voters.
Live calls are a much different story.
The Benefits of Live Phone Calls
I favor live calls because it provides candidates and campaigns with ways to specifically:
- Call cell phones that it’s illegal to contact with a robocall.
- Identify supporters and ask them to put your sign in their yard.
- Educate and persuade undecided voters to cast their ballots for you.
Those are the major upsides of using a professional live call center to make calls for your campaign.
And while it’s true that volunteers can and should be making calls on your behalf, they simply can’t get through hundreds or thousands of phone numbers in a matter of hours or days the way professional live phone callers can.
Unfortunately, candidates not running in a national election or a major statewide contest are not usually aware of how to hire a professional live call center for their campaign.
My firm also recently set up a new website (PoliticalPhoneCalls.com — this is an affiliate link) to educate candidates about the different types of live phone calls they can make, and to connect interested candidates with telephone call centers that can provide live calls for their campaign.
What are your thoughts or concerns about making live calls for your campaign? Please let me know in the comment section below.