Across the country, resistance groups and progressive candidates are launching their campaigns and mobilizing followers against Trump’s presidency and policies.

Threats against affordable health care, immigrants, labor and national decency demand quick action. The need to establish, promote and optimize your model in real time can make the launch phase of a campaign or cause an undeniable rollercoaster.

These six digital “musts” will help mitigate the chaos that comes with the crucial first steps of a campaign or non-profit advocacy effort.

1. You must have a website.

An online presence provides a validator for your organization, delivers key information and allows folks to join your cause. It collects pixel data and asks for donations. A good website is responsive (designed for desktop, mobile and tablet devices), loads quickly and has a thoughtful content hierarchy.

You don’t need a huge website for launch. A splash page with a sign-up form, photo and links to donation forms and social media accounts will do the trick.

2. You must have a way to log data.

If you are driving folks to your website at launch, you must have the proper technology stack in place to efficiently sign up supporters; if the infrastructure isn’t there, it is a missed opportunity to collect key data points. Select a Customer Relationship Manager (CRM) and donation platform well in advance of launch.

Under the surface of your website, your campaign should also start off with a robust cookie infrastructure. This includes loading retargeting and conversion pixels, Google Analytics containers and establishing conversion tracking checkpoints. All of these steps will be crucial for understanding how to reach potential supporters — and those insights will help you run a much more cost effective campaign.

3. You must have a logo.

Your campaign launch is a critical opportunity to establish a brand —  an eye-catching, recognizable, timeless, multi-platform identity for years to come. Between your website, press releases, emails and rally signs, your launch is a chance to establish the look, feel, tone and voice of your cause. Switching identities after launch is confusing for supporters and could be perceived as indecisive.

4. You must have a communications plan.

A solid launch communications plan spans from traditional to earned to online communications, all built around your core brand messaging. At launch, you should have developed your topline messaging and talking points, a press kit with media advisory and background material, and an op-ed for placement in a key publication.

If you have decided to invest in a small-dollar email fundraising program, launch day is the time to introduce your campaign to your existing email list  – no matter its size. Launch day is a stellar opportunity for recruiting volunteers, exciting your base and raising funds.

5. You must have social media accounts.

It goes without saying that active social media accounts are vital in today’s hyper connected rapid response universe. At a minimum, you should create and populate Facebook and Twitter accounts with branded images and key messaging for launch. Bonus points if you can verify your accounts.

6. You must have an advertising plan.

A campaign launch is a make-or-break opportunity for establishing momentum. It’s an exciting moment in the life of your organization, but maintaining that positive energy can be challenging. On the day of launch, a modest investment in acquisition and name ID ads will go a long way in your long-term engagement and list growth.

Interested in launching your campaign with us? Shoot us a note here.