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Phone banking
For Candidates

Powering Political Campaigns with Phone Banking

2 min read
Phone banking
Good Party Politics Team · Feb 19, 2024

Phone banking is a direct voter engagement tactic that involves campaign volunteers or staff making phone calls to voters. It is an effective way for political campaigns to reach out to voters, spread the word about their cause, and mobilize volunteer support. Phone banking is also commonly used to get out the vote ahead of election day.

In this guide, we’ll explore the top benefits of using phone banking to reach out to voters, the best times to run a phone banking campaign, and best practices for setting up your phone banking strategy.

Benefits of Phone Banking for Political Campaigns

There are many good reasons to include phone banking in your voter outreach strategy. Some of the top reasons include:

  • Proven Success: From the 1.7 million calls made during the first Vote Save America Weekend of Action campaign in 2020 to local political candidates like Nashville city council member Terry Vo using phone banking to rally support before the 2023 elections, there are many examples of the effectiveness of phone banking for political campaigns.

  • Cost Effectiveness: Call banking is usually more cost effective than door-to-door canvassing, while still connecting candidates and volunteers with voters for one-on-one conversations.

  • Increased Efficiency: Phone banking lets campaign teams reach more voters in a shorter amount of time, especially when using an automated dialing system. This means more can get done with a leaner team of volunteers.

  • Real-Time Communication: Phone banking lets campaign staff and volunteers answer voters’ questions and respond to concerns in real time.

  • Personal Touch: Call banking goes above and beyond text messaging or email outreach in its ability to establish personal connections and build authentic relationships with voters.

Phone banking also provides opportunities for personalization and continual improvement. Due to its adaptability and efficiency, phone banking has become an essential component of the modern campaign toolkit.


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When to Use Phone Banking in Politics

In political campaigns, phone calling is a versatile tactic that can be used at different phases of the election cycle. It can become even more effective when timed strategically throughout election season.

Here are some of the best times to launch a phone banking campaign:

Campaign Kickoff At the outset of your political campaign, phone calls can be a golden ticket to introducing the candidate's vision and goals. This early stage is all about making connections with potential supporters, gauging public opinion and listening to the community, and recruiting volunteers who are eager to propel the campaign to victory.

Building Bridges As election season goes on and your campaign gains momentum, phone conversations can become a key strategy for solidifying support. Calls with potential supporters should be aimed to persuade, offering in-depth insights into the candidate's proposals and addressing supporters’ concerns.

GOTV Efforts When election day looms close on the horizon, phone banking becomes a critical strategy for getting out the vote and encouraging voters to get to the polls and cast their votes. An effective GOTV campaign should involve reminding people to vote, assisting with logistics where possible, and emphasizing the crucial role each voter plays in shaping the election's outcome.

The Thank-You Call Even after the ballots are counted, phone banking continues to play a crucial role in voter engagement. This is a time for expressing gratitude to supporters, soliciting feedback on campaign strategies, and staying connected with the community for future initiatives or involvement. 

Strategically timed phone banking doesn't just build connections; it amplifies your campaign message and can significantly influence the path to political success.

Launching Your Phone Banking Strategy: A Step-by-Step Guide

How do you get started running a phone banking campaign? Follow these steps for the highest chance of success mobilizing voters and volunteers through phone conversations:

Phase 1: Laying the Groundwork

  • Set Clear Objectives: Begin by defining precise goals for your phone banking campaign. Whether it's to mobilize, persuade, or both, having clear targets will help shape your call scripts and volunteer training.

  • Get Access to Voter Data: Invest in high-quality voter data that will provide you and your campaign team with the names, phone numbers, and other details about the voters you hope to reach. Not sure where to start? Check out our list of the best data vendors for political campaigns here.

  • Craft Engaging Scripts: Develop call scripts that resonate with the spirit of your campaign. Scripts should be clear, engaging, and adaptable, ready to adjust to a variety of responses from voters. 

  • Invest in Volunteer Training: Provide training for your volunteers that covers the campaign's core message, how to handle voter objections, and how to collect data. You might consider incorporating role-playing to boost volunteers’ confidence before sending them to the phones.

Phase 2: Making the Calls

  • Prioritize Your Call Lists: Organize your lists by voter preferences or demographics, focusing on high-impact contacts. Ensure your data is up-to-date and comply with legal guidelines to avoid complications.

  • Communicate with Respect: Emphasize the importance of respectful and empathetic communication. Volunteers should engage in a manner that allows potential supporters to feel at ease and valued.

  • Be Responsive: Encourage your team to listen actively and tailor their approach based on the feedback received. Address voters’ concerns, provide information, and steer conversations towards your campaign goals.

Phase 3: Evaluating and Refining Your Approach

  • Track Your Progress: Implement systems to monitor key metrics like call volume, connection rates, and voter feedback. Utilize technology to simplify data collection and analysis.

  • Review and Adapt: Regularly assess your phone banking campaign's performance to identify strengths and areas for improvement. Use these insights to refine your strategies and tactics.

  • Aim for Continuous Improvement: Create a culture of ongoing enhancement. Gather volunteer feedback, share best practices, and adjust your approach based on your team’s experiences.

The Roles of Volunteers in Phone Banking

Successful political campaigns rely heavily on volunteers who donate their time, energy, and commitment to engage with supporters. Volunteers can play the following roles in a phone banking campaign:

  • Advocates and Ambassadors: In every call they make, volunteers exemplify the campaign’s culture and ideals as passionate advocates. Voters can be inspired by their sincere belief in the candidate's message, which cultivates authenticity and trust.

  • Front-Line Communicators: Volunteers serve as the front-line communicators who connect potential supporters to the campaign team. They help clarify the candidate's positions, respond to voter questions, and act as a direct line of communication for campaign information.

  • Data Gatherers: Beyond just having conversations with voters, volunteers gather insightful information. This data is crucial for effective voter outreach tactics and fine-tuning your campaign strategy.

Best Practices for Volunteers 

  • Build Rapport: To effectively engage voters, start calls with a friendly greeting and empathetic tone.

  • Active Listening: To build trust and demonstrate the authenticity of the campaign, pay attention to the concerns voters raise and reply thoughtfully.

  • Patience and Persistence: Accept that not every dial will be successful; patience and persistence are crucial for successful phone banking.

Dialer Types for Phone Banking: Manual vs. Automated Dialers

The choice between manual and automated dialers is a critical factor in phone banking. The choice may largely depend on the size of your campaign’s budget, resources, and volunteer network.

Manual Dialers

Manual calling depends on volunteers to manually dial each number from a supplied list. Because volunteers start and oversee conversations with voters directly, this approach adds a personal touch. However, because it consumes a lot of time, the number of calls that can be made in an hour are limited. Manual dialing often works well for smaller-scale political campaigning where voter engagement requires a more personalized strategy. 

Automated Dialers

Call center software is used to automatically call numbers on a list. They greatly boost the volume of calls, enabling volunteers to speak with more voters in less time. In order to increase efficiency, some call center software first connects volunteers to live calls after filtering out disconnected or unanswered calls. 

Targeted voter demographics, volunteer capability, and political campaigning objectives should all be taken into account when choosing between manual and automated dialers. 

Phone Banking Support for Your Campaign

In today's political campaigns, phone banking is a crucial tactic that increases voter participation, creates personal relationships with supporters, and amplifies your campaign message. That’s why Good Party offers phone banking support for independent, non-partisan, and third-party candidates, connecting your campaign with our nationwide network of volunteers.

Ready to get started with phone banking? Book a free demo of Good Party’s campaign tools and phone banking support here — or learn more about the growing number of candidates who are taking advantage of our tools to find success on election day.


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How to Run for Office
Campaign Messaging
Campaign Technology
Political Volunteering
Volunteer Engagement
Phone banking
By Good Party Politics Team
The politics team is focused on transforming the political landscape by promoting transparency, accountability, and positive change. They aim to engage citizens in the political process, encourage informed decision-making, and support candidates who prioritize the common good. Their mission revolves around creating a more fair and just political system, fostering collaboration, and breaking down traditional barriers of partisanship.