Calculating Costs of a Campaign Web Site

Here's a Baseline guide to assessing the costs of finding and mobilizing political Web evangelists. Read about the Internet's potential to reach many people in many ways, and from the many-Web-based applications and dispersed voters alike&#151


E pluribus unum. Its the motto of the country you want to lead. And when it comes to your presidential campaigns Web strategy, it may just be your ticket to the White House. Name recognition is not your strength, but a technology-savvy staff is. So remember the Internets potential to reach many people in many ways, and from the many—Web-based applications and dispersed voters alike—create one winning campaign.

But first, build that Web site. Plan on a rapid four-month buildup, working with consultants to establish the design and essential content and services. Simple and straightforward will be the guiding vision throughout, and the less development you do, the better. Identify proven applications that will deliver the services you need, and quickly integrate them into your site. The first service youll want in place is a suite of fundraising applications that will allow you to securely accept online donations and track data on donors and overall trends.

/zimages/5/28571.gifClick here for an in-depth article on the influence of the Internet and blogging for Howard Deans presidential campaign.

Now move on to the 18-month operation phase, which will scale up with the campaign. Hammer home your message—and let visitors communicate theirs—through a variety of content-management applications. And empower the voters youve connected with through a meeting application that will match up and mobilize supporters at the local level. "The power of the Internet is that it collects and connects disparate people who share a common interest," says Phil Noble, an online-campaign consultant and the founder of PoliticsOnline. "Dont forget the value of 50,000 people volunteering and organizing online for you."

To read the details behind this planner and fill in your own numbers, download the spreadsheet from