September 17, 2020
Sponsor A Phonebanker: A Sister District South Bay LA Case Study

With only 100 days until Election Day, Roxi and Gary — leaders of Sister District South Bay LA — knew they needed a fun, creative way to get folks to make calls during the weekend of July 24th. The question was: if a volunteer wouldn’t make the calls themselves, would they “sponsor” someone to make those calls for them? Nearly $2,000 raised for over 1,000 dials later, we determined the answer was a resounding yes!

Planning

We chose to name this the “100 Dials for ‘100 Days’ Challenge” and used the project to ease volunteer phone anxiety. The idea was to call 100 voters as fast as you can, maximizing your efficiency, and making a big dent in the call universe of these campaigns. We didn’t set any goals around finding supporters, opposition, wrong numbers, or undecided voters. Our goal was simply to make 100 calls as quickly as possible!

Volunteers could choose between two paths:

  1. Pledging to make 100 calls between Friday and Sunday for their preferred candidate (Ann Johnson, Bonnie Westlin, or Aleta Borrud)
  2. Sponsoring one of the callers at an amount of their choice per dial ie. $1/dial = $100, $0.25/dial = $25, donated to their preferred candidate.

Promotion

In order to make this a success, we needed to find callers and sponsors. We did this in a few ways:

  • MailChimp – we sent out three waves of recruitment emails like this which contained links to sign up as either a caller or a sponsor.
  • Hustle – Organizing Department staff put together a Hustle campaign to text through our list of volunteers to recruit for the challenge
  • Affiliates – this was a great opportunity to reach out to some of our affiliates to get them involved! Some groups focus more heavily on fundraising so this was a great chance to bring them in on our phonebanking program
  • Networking – we drafted sample emails for our callers and sponsors to use to reach out to their own networks asking folks to donate or join them in calling voters!

Success!

In order to share the news and debrief the weekend’s success, we asked folks to join us on Sunday for a congratulatory toast. Once there, we were able to share the great news:

  • Recruited 11 callers, 21 sponsors, and 6 additional donors
  • 1,061 Total Dials with an average of 96.5 dials/caller
  • We raised $1,730.20 for an average of $64.08 per donor