DVC phone bankers made almost one million calls in 2020 to elect Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, and more than 150,000 calls during the 2022 midterms to hold the Senate. Join our team to make a difference in the next election!
Phone banks are on now for the Wisconsin Supreme Court election—an election with major consequences for the whole country. WisDems (Wisconsin Democratic Party) is running phone banks six days per week.
Phone banks are happening at these times:
all times Pacific
- Mondays 2-4pm
- Tuesday 3:30-6pm
- Wednesday 3-5pm or 3:30-5:30pm
- Thursdays 2-4pm
- Saturdays 7-10am, 10am-1pm, or 1pm-4pm
- Sundays 7-10am, 10am-1pm, or 1pm-4pm
- Plus additional times on Monday April 3 and Tuesday April 4
You can find additional opportunities to phone bank for this election with these organizations:
- Bay Area Coalition, every Wednesday
- Grassroots Dem HQ, Wednesdays and Saturdays
- Swing Blue Alliance, Mondays
- Indivisible Northampton-Swing Left & Swing Blue Alliance, Thursdays
- Reclaim Our Vote is a non-partisan organization making calls to Black voters in Wisconsin every Tuesday and Wednesday
To become a phone banker with the DVC for future events:
- Go to our volunteer form here
- Fill in your email, name, phone, and zip code
- Click Volunteer Now
Once you’re signed up as a DVC phone banker, we’ll keep you informed about campaigns you can call for and details about how to get help with phonebanking. If you’re new to phone banking or just want to brush up, you can access a recording of our webinar here. We’re also providing the webinar slides here for easy reference.
Have questions? Email email@example.com your phone banking questions.
Phone banking: The details
What is phone banking?
A phone bank is a coordinated effort by a campaign to talk with voters, using official state and local voter lists to decide who to call. These lists contain every registered voter, combined with information from previous campaigns and the DNC.
We make calls:
- To encourage people to register, complete ballots, and vote for Democrats.
- To find volunteers.
- But especially to gather data for future action.
Every call is a good call!
- All data is good! Even the bad and the ugly!
- Data from voters who do not like our candidate is a Good Call!
- Wrong or disconnected numbers are Good Calls!
- Finding out a voter has deceased is sad, but the call itself is a Good Call!
Why is this good?
- We’re cleaning the lists to prepare for GOTV (Get Out the Vote).
- GOTV is typically the final days of the campaign when we call/knock on doors of every voter who’s been identified as a supporter.
- We need them to vote! Without their vote, We Won’t Win!
Why phone bank early?
- Early voter engagement is key!
- Next to knocking on doors, phone banking is proven to be the most effective way to reach voters.
- This year, early knocking on doors will be limited due to Coronavirus.
- We must clean up the voter lists before the final Get Out the Vote stretch.
- We need to identify both supporters and non-supporters.
- We need lots of volunteers, and everyone we call needs to talk to 10 more people!
- Many voters may have not been contacted in a while and we need to make sure our voter lists are up to date.
First step: Your phone banking account
NOTE: The specifics of setting up an account may change from year to year. If you’ve never phone banked before, we encourage you to join a training event. You can look for them on our calendar, or sign up with us and get our monthly newsletter with announcements about upcoming training events.
Most campaigns the DVC supports use either an ActionID or Bluevote to log you in so you can start calling. You’ll need to create an ActionID or register for Bluevote before you begin calling. Just follow these steps:
Create your ActionID
- Go to https://www.openvpb.com/VirtualPhoneBank/ and click the Get Started, then click the ‘Create an ActionID account’ link:
- To complete your signup, check your email for a message from firstname.lastname@example.org (if you don’t see it, check your junk mail folder)
- Click on Confirm My Account
- Once you complete these steps, you should see the ActionID’s webpage with a “Thanks for verifying…” message
Remember your email address and password!
How to Phone bank using your ActionID
- Go to the DVC’s “Calls Page” (phone bankers are emailed a link to this page; email email@example.com if you can’t find it).
- Click on the link for the candidate you want to call for.
- Enter your email address and your password.
- You’ll be taken to information on your first voter.
- Start calling!
Create your “bluevote” login
You will first need to register (once registered, you will not have to repeat this step).
- Click here to go to bluevote, then click the ‘Click here to Register’ link.
- Complete the registration form (you will be asked for your email address each time you start phonebanking). Entering your phone number and street address is optional.
- Click on “Confirm Registration” to submit
How to Phone bank using “bluevote”
- Go to the DVC’s “Calls Page” (phonebankers are emailed a link to this page; email firstname.lastname@example.org if you can’t find it).
- Enter the email address you used to register.
- Enter the “DVC – Palo Alto” as the Volunteer Organization.
- You’ll be taken to information on your first voter.
- Start calling!
Making calls – Using the script and being yourself
- Review the script and put it in your own words.
- Learn about your candidate from their website.
- Get key voting information: visit vote.org for information about voting by mail, voter registration, finding polling places, and more for any state.
- Understand how to mark voter responses.
- Feeling nervous?
- Most people are nervous at first!
- Remind yourself why you’re doing this, and all that is at stake.
- It’s okay to make mistakes – we all do!
- Worried that a voter will yell at you? It happens. Just move on.
- Don’t have all the answers? It’s fine! Refer them to the candidate’s website. Or, get their phone number and call them back.
Phone banking etiquette: Make the most of your calls
- Call when it is convenient for the voter – check the time zone of the state you’re calling.
- Be brief and get to the point.
- Smile and be upbeat.
- Make a personal connection with the voter (“My aunt lived in Wichita” …)
- Tell the voter why YOU support the candidate.
- No need to argue with a voter! Just move on.
- Be prepared for all types of voters (Grouchy, hang ups and even some swearing!)
- You WILL talk with voters who like your candidate.
- Thank the voter for taking your call and for voting.
To leave messages, or not to leave messages
Most campaigns do not want us to leave messages. Why?
- It can take too long to leave a message – time is better spent making calls.
- Most people don’t listen to them if they don’t know you.
- It is not a way to identify supporters and track your calls.
- People get annoyed by phone messages.
- They may be less likely to talk when reached later.
Please do NOT leave messages unless the campaign specifically asks you to.
IMPORTANT: Tracking your data
Marking voter’s responses is the key to cleaning up our data. Responses include:
- Not home – the voter doesn’t pick up the phone, they will be called again
- Busy – same as not home
- Wrong number, Disconnected
- Refused – when the voter explicitly tells you to leave them alone
- Deceased – sad, but important data to clean up list
- Do they support our candidate – and other campaign-specific questions?
- If told by another member of a household that the voter will not vote for our candidate, then because they are not the voter – mark as not-home and the voter the will be called again
- Will they volunteer?!