Campaign Finances

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Structuring the budget
Here is an example of the structure of a campaign budget:

Proceeds from the sale of material
(Plus perhaps a part of the party’s assets)

Posters (including image rights, graphic costs)
Agency (online + offline, possibly separated)
Media advertising: ads, cinema, radio, TV, television in the underground, etc.
Photo session with candidates
Reserve for final phase
Fundraising investment
Campaign material, give-aways
Campaign newspapers
Personal publicity (mailings)
Production of give-aways,
Production of cinema spots, etc.
Committee meetings (Election Campaign Convention)

Permanent staff
Employees on temporary contracts (usually persons at the beginning of their careers)
Experts with higher wages or as external advisers
Online agency

Keep your paid staff small. More personnel also means more effort to steer your campaign – this also needs to be taken into account. Without a working structure and clear leadership tasks, you will waste money on chaotic activities.

During the campaign you should always know precisely how much has already been assigned to specific activities – and how much remains. For a smooth running campaign, it is crucial to be able to monitor and control your budget effectively. The structure of the budget has to be clear so that all expenses can be easily be allocated. Never lose the overview, watch your budget closely!

The processes of decision making and spending have to be well defined. Who is allowed to place orders? Who has to agree? Be precise when defining responsibilities but don’t forget that decisions sometimes have to be made quickly during a campaign. Somebody who is allowed to sign should always be available.

After the campaign you should always evaluate the financing of the campaign. Write down how your decision making and spending processes worked. What turned out well, where did you experience difficulties? Which parts of the budget had to be adjusted? Which ones were easy to plan and control? These notes will be of enormous help when you plan your next campaign budget… Good luck!

[Click here for Best Practice Examples]

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