House parties are gatherings of people such as friends, neighbors, people you know from work or anyone else you’ve chosen to invite who come together to learn more about Democrats for Change. What you do at your house party is up to you, but the most important thing is to have fun and get everyone to sign up to be a supporter of Lisa McCormick and other candidates who share progressive American values.
A house party should be the ultimate social gathering, where you are in control over the music, guest list, hours of indulgent fun — and all the details.
Extend party invitations to your friends and neighbors. The neighbors that don’t show up, may still feel special knowing you would have them over and you are a respectful neighbor.
List all of the jobs that you don’t want to do at your party and then invite guests to fill those positions. Put some of your friends to work and your primary responsibility will be to act as the best host around.
Be firm about the start time. You have friends that may be punctual and others will stroll in after they hit 3 other stops. If there is a program or candidate visit scheduled, be sure your invitation is clear on when people must be there. Put activity right in the middle to accomodate those who come late or leave early.
House party invitations should be “word-of-mouth” instead of something impersonal. Creating a Facebook event or sending a flyer to everyone in your Google Groups is not the best way to go about getting people to show up. Make phone calls, mail invitations or hand out cards to people you see in person.
House parties are important because when you talk to the people in your life, it is the single most effective way to build Lisa’s campaign. People are more likely to vote for Lisa McCormick when friends, family members and neighbors explain the issues and Lisa’s desire to be a champion for the 99 percent of Americans who have been left behind by corrupt politicians. These parties also provide an opportunity for attendees to sign up for the Democrats for Change campaign and have fun.
How do I host a house party?
SELECT A DATE
Be mindful of holidays, local events, and traditions like the Big Game, so you don’t create a conflict for your attendees and you get great turnout.
Check the campaign calendar to see if there are any big events coming up that might make your friends more excited to attend your house party.
CHOOSE YOUR VENUE
Most house parties will take place in someone’s home this will help determine how many people to invite. You can invite 5 people or 500; whatever makes you comfortable is the right number.
INVITE YOUR GUESTS
Set a goal for how many people you want to attend your party. But remember, not everyone you invite will be able to attend. Invite about double the number of attendees you actually want to show up to be sure to hit your goal.
You can invite your family, friends, work colleagues, people you know through civic or community groups like Chamber of Commerce or Toastmasters, and members of your religious community, and your neighbors. Cast a wide net to ensure you get anyone who might be a supporter.
The best way to get people who actually attend your event is to pick up the phone and call them. There’s just no substitute for a personal phone call. But definitely use social media, email, and any other method you can think of to reach out to your networks.
Ask them to RSVP so you can get a firm headcount for your event. You definitely want to reconfirm everyone’s attendance a few days before the event, and remind them that you’re getting ready for them. That will make every attendee feel special and more likely to actually come to your house party.
If you like, identify a few friends to act as cohosts to help you spread the word and invite others to attend if you’ve got space to fill.
Don’t forget to include important information, like where should your guests park or if you have pets. That will help all of your guests feel comfortable and make sure anyone who has allergies or special needs can let you know before the big day.
The Day of the Party
Print out your signup sheets. You’ll need enough so that every one of your guests can let you know they attended, so make sure to print out a stack before you get going.
Check your internet connection. You may want to play a video, or take signups via an online form, so make sure you’re online if you have access to it.
Charge your phone. Everyone will be calling you, plus you’ll want to snap some photos, so make sure your battery is full.
Send a final reminder. The more you check in with your guests, the more they know you’re excited and ready for them to attend your party.
During the Party
PLAN YOUR AGENDA
Here’s a possible agenda for your party. But don’t worry, these are just suggestions. You know your people best, so customize until it works for you.
Share some reasons why you’re convinced Lisa is the right person to be our next president.
Invite others to share their story everyone will get excited to talk about why they support Lisa.
If you have good internet and a place to show it, you might show a video. Check out www.youtube.com/LisaMcCormick to see the latest from the campaign.
Pass around the signup sheet. The most important goal from your party is making sure you can get in touch with your team, so be sure every guest signs up so you have a good base of supporters for your next event.
If it makes sense for your party, feel free to ask for donations. www.LisaMcCormick.org/donate makes it easy to donate on your smartphone, if your guests have them. For more information about fundraising, go to www.LisaMcCormick.org/donate.
Make your ask. You want as many people as possible to agree to host a meeting in your area. Don’t be afraid to be direct and ask people to help. You’ll be surprised at how eager people are to volunteer when they are given the opportunity.
AFTER THE PARTY
It’s not over! Make sure you send thank you notes to everyone who attended.
Don’t forget to make an “ask” to your guests. An ask is just what it sounds like if your guest made the commitment to come to your event, they might be willing to make more commitments to you and the campaign. Ask them to donate, ask them to volunteer, ask them to sign up. Make the ask, because chances are, your friends will say yes.
A key ask for your guests that will really help Lisa is to ask them to host an event. The more people who host an event, the more connections between Lisa supporters, the better. At this stage of the campaign, we need to get help from everyone who wants to elect Lisa and candidates like her.
Enter your data. It is critical for you to send all the signups you gathered back to the campaign so we can follow up with you guests – and so you get credit for your great work. In fact, we’ll have a special surprise for the host who registers the most guests, and it is not to be missed. Enter your information in at www.LisaMcCormick.org/data. This is the single most important thing you can do for the campaign and for Lisa.
USE SOCIAL MEDIA
If you use social media, right click on an image at LisaMcCormick.com/share and “Save as Picture.” Post this picture as your cover photo when you make a Facebook event. Social media can be a great way to spread the word about your event and keep your guests updated.
You can use our images as your social media profile picture or cover photo to show that you are an official host.
Facebook Cover Photo
Facebook Profile Photo
Say, ‘Thank You’
Thank you cards are always in style! Send your guests a nice note after your party, and feel free to use some stationary.
Sample Reminder Email
Subject: Reminder: House Party soon!
We’re so excited to see you this week and can’t wait to share more information about Lisa McCormick and Democrats for Change. Showing early support is crucial to the success of the campaign, and I hope you’ll join me as a supporter.
As a reminder:
Day of the Week, Month DD, 201Y
Home of Person1 and Person2
555 Host St.
Host Township, AA 10101
RSVP at lisamccormick/events
If you’re no longer able to come to the house party, please reply to this email and let us know.
See you then!
John Smith and Jane Doe
Sample Thank You Email
Subject: Thank You for coming to the House Party
I hope you liked learning about Lisa McCormick and Democrats for Change, as well as your opportunity to help end corruption in government and restore democracy.
We are still developing some of the tools & resources, but check back for:
House party invitations
Thank you cards
Facebook Cover Photo
Facebook Profile Photo