Do's And Don'ts On Your Campaign Website

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A set of Do's And Don'ts On Your Campaign Website

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  • @henri: in the second bullet....is this online? on websites? 
  • why can't we chat on a google presenation doc?
  • Bill Conner for US Congress -  Mr. Connner’s website looks like it was built in 1998. There is not much else to say here.  Luckily for Mr. Conner, his opponents do not fair much better. George Hutchins for US Congress 2010 -  Mr. Hutchins is by far the worse offender of the group. He uses multicolor fonts and is not shy about highlighting text throughout the site. The site is also full of badly photoshoped images created to imply endorsement or support from various Republican Leader (dead or alive). Jerry Ortiz y Pino for Lieutenant Governor of New Mexico – Multi-color navigation items and scrolling text.  Enough said. Patricia Bird for US Congress – Ms. Bird decided on a basic hosting package provided by Comcast to its users. She managed to  add a calendar widget (not linked to anything), a weather widget (Currently it is 47 degrees in Mount Prospect, IL) , and an event widgets (also not linked to anything). While her blog does not  contain any entries except for the default demo entry, the event section seems to have been updated a couple of times. Paul Hamann for US Congress – Like Ms. Bird, Mr. Hamann did not bother with a domain name or hosting. He relies on an out-of-the box blogspot site with one of the default templates. The site has no way for supporters to get involved. In fairness to him, his website is the first result when searching for his campaign on Google. Peter Thottam for CA Assembly – Flash, flash, and more flash. Sounds when the page first loads and when the user hovers on any of the navigation items. The background fades from blue to red and multiple links lead the user to to nowhere. According to the footer at the bottom of his site, Mr. Thottam designed and maintains his website, which explains a lot.
  • Do's And Don'ts On Your Campaign Website

    1. 1. Do's and Don'ts on Your Campaign Website Henri Makembe, localpolitechs.com Isaac Salazar, mddems.org Maureen Higgins, mddems.org
    2. 2. Overview <ul><ul><li>Introduction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do's </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don'ts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sample Websites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Q/A </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3. Why your website matters <ul><ul><li>24% of Americans learn about campaigns online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>55% of American adults get news or information about political candidates online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1 in 3 forward political content to friends </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. Do's  
    5. 5. 1. Design for lowest Common denominator <ul><ul><li>Most visitors do NOT use current browser version.  Be Backward Compatible  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design your pages for 1024x768 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Test (connection speed), Test (browsers), Test (user flow).  </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. 2. Focus on Content <ul><ul><li>Be short, sweet and to the point </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make it easy to scan your website. Use H tags & Bullets, Bold important words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good content is good SEO </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Write for the web &  Keep it fresh </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Promote your content </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. 3. Have Prominent Action Buttons <ul><ul><li>Contribute, volunteer, register to vote, links to social networks ABOVE the fold </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Give user elements interactivity right away  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Established baseline for ladder of engagement </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. 4. Prominent E-mail Capture <ul><ul><li>Email signup  must be visible and obvious </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep the from simple of short - E-mail sign up form is NOT  volunteer form </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use cookie-based splash pages </li></ul></ul>
    9. 9. 5. Use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)     <ul><ul><li>Creates consistent formatting across site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easier to maintain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easier to deal with  browsers' quirks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increases load speed </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Don'ts  
    11. 11.   1. Flash or Flash Intros <ul><ul><li>Difficult to maintain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not present on all machines & requires download </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not backwards compatible  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does NOT work on mobile devices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use JQuery instead </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. 2. Long paragraphs/welcome letters <ul><ul><li>Average time spent on the website is  less than 120 sec. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most visitors only read content 'above the fold' </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Long letters take up valuable real estate on your site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  Use short paragraphs, bullets & links </li></ul></ul>
    13. 13. 3. Music / Sounds <ul><ul><li>Increases page size </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does NOT echo message </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Detracts from User experience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lacks professionalism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When using video, disable auto-play </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14.   4. Gimmicks or Overdo widgets <ul><ul><li>Blink/Scrolling text  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pops-ups windows </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Automatic window resizing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  page counters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distract visitors from Message </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. 5. Leave it to your kid/nephew <ul><ul><li>Lack of campaign experience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of knowledge of affordable solutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design best practices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use professionals or freelancers with proven portfolio </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Sample Websites <ul><li>The Good </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kevin Yoder for Congress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sean Duffy for Congress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hickenlooper for Governor of Colorado </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The Bad & Ugly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Paul Hamann for U.S. Congress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bill Conner for U.S. Congress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>George Hutchins for U.S. Congress </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. The Good
    18. 18. Kevin Yoder for Congress
    19. 19. Sean Duffy for Congress
    20. 20. Hickenlooper for Colorado
    21. 21. The Bad & The Ugly
    22. 22. Paul Hamman for u.s. congress
    23. 23. Bill Conner for U.S. Congress
    24. 24. George Hutchins for U.S. Congress
    25. 25. RESOURCES <ul><ul><li>http://www.w3schools.com </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  Web Writing: http://www.useit.com/papers/webwriting/ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design: http://www.killersites.com/ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http:// www.localpolitechs.com  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.epolitics.com </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://freelanceswitch.com OR  http://www.elance.com </li></ul></ul>
    26. 26. Q&A

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