“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” – Tony Robbins
This post doesn’t pertain to the practice of setting goals, more so, this is how to set reasonable expectations for what you should accomplish in a political race.
Determining how much money to raise is a goal that seems simple in theory, but in practice, you must consider the many aspects of your race when setting a benchmark.
For example, the significance of your race will set an expectation as to how much money you need to raise for the race. A local race and a congressional race are not the same. Federal races (House, Senate, Presidential) require much more capitol than state and local races. Therefore, one should assume that if you are running a state assembly campaign, your budget will be less than if you were running a congressional campaign. Simply put, set your expectations and raise money accordingly.
Your political affiliation is another variable. A Democrat in Alabama likely would raise less compared to a Republican, and a Republican in California probably won’t raise as much as a Democrat.
Finally, understand how your personal contacts are able to help, and your own financial situation. Plenty of wealthy individuals write themselves checks in large amounts, but there are caps on what a candidate can accept from a donor. Know what the limits in your race are.