“The harder you work, the luckier you get.”
That sentence — which my father wrote in a card he gave to me when I graduated from college — is, I think, the most important thing that a candidate running for public office can remember. A good campaign plan, money in your coffers, and plenty of volunteers are all keys to winning a political campaign, sure . . . but none of these are as important as your willingness as a candidate to work hard.
Remember: when it comes to political campaigns, the harder it is to do, the more effective it is. Walking in a parade is easy . . . and it’s also some of the lamest campaigning you can do. Knocking on every door in your city to introduce yourself to residents is hard . . . but it’s also a very effective way to win votes.
My name is Phil Van Treuren, and I’ve worked on dozens of local, statewide and national campaigns over the last 15 years as a volunteer, paid campaign manager and political consultant.
I’ve also been elected to office myself, and have had the honor of serving as a councilman at-large in my own city. I know that most people run for office because they want to make a positive difference in their community. For candidates like myself, who look at elected office as a vehicle that will allow them to help their neighbors, a good political campaign is the first step in realizing that dream.
I started the Political Campaigning Tips blog to share some of the lessons I’ve learned on the campaign trail with new (and seasoned) election candidates. I’ve had a lot of wins on the campaign trail, but I’ve also made plenty of mistakes . . . and I hope you can use this website to learn from my successes and failures.
This site isn’t geared toward one political party or the other, and you won’t see any partisan bashing here. Just good, solid, common-sense political campaign strategy that can be used by anyone who wants to run for office and make their community a better place to live.
I save the best election strategy for this site, but here are some of the other places online where my political campaign advice has appeared: