A few years ago I received one of the worst campaign email announcements I’ve ever seen. Thank goodness this one came from a Democrat (for a change). Some lessons you can learn…
Let’s start with the fact that it was sent to around 600 of the state’s paid professional registered lobbyists…and every one of them was listed in the cc – not BCC – box of the email. Which means the names and email addresses of every person this was sent to were published for all the world to see.
Stuuuu-pid. Epic fail. How NOT to win friends.
Secondly, take a look at the campaign URL: www.ivey4nvad20.org
Good grief, where to start?
(1) The candidate’s full name isn’t in there, only what one would assume is his last name.
(2) He uses “4” instead of “for” (how cute) which means he’ll have to explain that anytime he gives out his campaign website address verbally on radio, TV or in public speeches.
(3) He uses “nv” instead of “nevada” – assuming everyone will know what this means and remember it.
(4) He uses “ad20” instead of “assembly district20” – assuming everyone will know what “ad” stands for – in addition to having to change the URL completely if he ever runs for any other office or in different district.
(5) He uses a “dot-org” address rather than “dot-com.”
I didn’t even look it up, but I’d be willing to bet that no one already owned www.ivey4nvad20.com, so this is even stupider.
But have no fear, there’s “more dumb to come.” Take a look at the message itself. It is a classic “I-letter” – and a lame one at that:
I am writing you to introduce myself I am Kent Ivey and I am a candidate in the newly formed Assembly District 20.
I am running for this seat because I am concerned about the direction of our government and I feel I can add a fresh perspective to the deliberations in Carson City.
My background, both professional and personal makes me well suited for this office.
I will run a vigorous, professional and effective campaign. I will spend the next 3 ½ months talking to voters at their doors and I am confident after the Primary in June that I will be the nominee of the Democratic Party.
I invite you to visit my website at www.ivey4nvad20.org to learn more, and contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or on my cell at 702-460-xxxx, to discuss the any issues or concerns you may have.
I look forward to having an opportunity to discuss particular issues you represent in Nevada, and how we can mutually benefit one another.
I thank you for your time and hope to hear from you.
Sincerely, Kent L. Ivey
Paragraph #1: I guess in his excitement to talk about himself, Mr. Ivey forgot to put a period after “myself” in his opening paragraph. Seems like just a minor grammatical error, right? But those errors mean something if you want to be taken seriously. Spell-check and proof your copy, folks!
Paragraph #2: It’s all about “me, me, me, me, me.” It’s even worse because he’s sending this to a list of experienced, well-established lobbyists who have zero interest in the “fresh perspective” of an unelected, wet-behind-the-ears first-time candidate.
Paragraph #3: “My background (it’s all about ME!), both professional and personal makes me (I am so GREAT!) well suited for this office.”
And yet…I’m not going to tell you exactly WHAT my professional and personal background is. So there!
Paragraph #4, 5, 6 & 7: I, I, I, I, I.
And finally…no call to action. Aside from the candidate wanting the reader to listen to the candidate talk about the candidate and the candidate’s campaign…what does the candidate want the unfortunate recipients of this email to do? Who knows.
They simply don’t get much worse than this. Is YOUR campaign making any of the same communication mistakes? If so, fix ‘em NOW.