Data Categorization for Micro-Management
Once you have determined the basic election rules, you should start to gather as much information on the Constituency and the voters as possible. How large is the Constituency in which you will be running? What type of terrain will you have to cover as you campaign? What type of transportation will you and the voters need to use? How has the population of the Constituency changed recently?
You need to understand the political landscape in which you will be operating. Who are the important political players in the area? How strong are the various political parties in the area? Who are the civic and business leaders that can influence the campaign? Winning the support of a particularly influential leader in the community can often make the campaign much easier.
You also must understand how voters get their information. What are the local media outlets? Who are the reporters and what are their deadlines? How will the election be covered and how does the press view the various candidates? To develop a comprehensive press strategy, it is important to have as much information on the media as possible.
You will need to break the voters in your Constituency into manageable groups. This is the basis you will later use to develop a strategy for targeting particular voters.
The following are some of the questions you may want to consider. Is there a voter file or accurate list of all possible voters available to the campaign? What support is there for various political parties? What is the demographic composition of the voters? For example, what are the income levels, education levels, professions, ethnic backgrounds, religious backgrounds, age, gender, etc.? Where do people work, shop and play? What is the geographic break down of the voters? What percentage or how many people live in the city, in the rural areas or in small villages? Do the voters live in single-family homes or apartments? How would you describe your supporters and those voters you hope to persuade?
Voters with similar characteristics may have similar interests and may tend to vote the same way. Seniors will be less interested in schools and more interested in pensions while young mothers will be more interested in schools and less interested in pensions. By determining how many senior citizens there are and how many young mothers there are, you will be better able to target your message to groups that matter to your success.
Often you can gain valuable information about this election by looking at information from past elections. Who ran for this position in your Constituency in past elections and what were the results? How many voters turned out for similar elections in the past? How many votes were needed to win? You may be able to use this type of information to predict the turnout and baseline levels of support in this election. How did candidates with similar backgrounds and messages fair in past elections? You will want this type of information later when you determine what worked for them and what you will have to do differently to do better than they did.
Next you should look at the factors that will affect this election, namely the various issues that concern voters and other political campaigns, which are being waged in the area. What local, regional or national issues are important to voters? What will motivate voters to go to the polls? How would you describe the voter mood?
What other races will be on the same ballot? Will candidates in other races help or hurt your campaign? Is there the opportunity to work with other campaigns in a coordinated manner? What effect will other campaigns have on the election? Your relationship with your party and other candidates on the same ticket will affect your strategy. Your campaign’s message should complement, or at least not contradict, the other messages.
Election Awaaz helps you to categorized data as per the above so that it can be utilized to get the maximium positive votes.