Dear reader, I have good and bad news for you. The Good News: The general election is upon us. The bad news: it’s too late to redesign the leaflets, which bulge the walls of your postbox or rain on your doormat in colours of a very strange 5 colours rainbow. Never fear, we’ve created a comprehensive list of “What not to do while you are expecting the vote”. So in five years, if you decide to become rich and famous, sorry, an MP, you will produce a perfect leaflet.
Let’s start from basics, as in primary school level – spelling and punctuation. The volunteers from your team have not paid much attention to their school lessons, but that’s ok, you don’t pay them anyway. Unfortunately, the same teachers, who were savaging their creative essays with red ink, will do the same to your leaflet, and name, and shame personally you. Do take time to run the proposed text through a spellchecker (we a not naming any proprietary programs like Word ™ or Grammarly ™ here).
People have a strange, unreasonable attachment to the names of places where they live. The more obscure the spelling, the more they attached to it. It’s advisable to check the name again and again – and to check some more, until you are absolutely sure that you are not in London anymore.
Maintaining the neutrality of our highly professional advice, we have to point out that not only Tories are guilty of misspelling and happy to point out to the Labour leaflet (hint: the misspelt part of the word is the same as the name of the Hobbit land).
Less inducing the voters outrage but more snigger trigger are mistakes around your own name on the leaflet:
* Do make sure that the name is there, otherwise, impressed by your achievements and promises society ills, voters will be in vain looking for Name Surname on the list of candidates. And, not finding it, will cry and never vote again.
*You cannot change your name until after the election. But you can make sure that folding the leaflet doesn’t make your name or face into a four letter word. We have warned you about the teachers in your probable constituency. Well, there are also origami and secret conspiracies lovers. You’ve been warned
Less likely than teachers, origamists and conspiracy theorist but still possible among your reluctant readers are people who will bother to check the facts on the leaflet. It’s probably a good idea not to promise recycling facilities upgrade and print the leaflets on a non-recyclable paper. Or (just a hypothetical example) to promote local business while using the printers in a different part of the UK.
Disguising your leaflet as something else, for example a free newspaper with some News Of The World style expose, works. For about thirty seconds. Then it comes and bites you in the back, like boomerang or a promise not to raise tuition fees.
And lastly, a bonus picture for those patient enough and are not easily bored by the diagrams (math teachers? accountants?). Massaging statistics is a time-honoured politician’s tool. However, it is much easier to spot the massaged part when you have your rival using the same figures. And in our democratic society you do have rivals, even they pretended for 4,5 years to be in the same coalition boat.
Comparing the blue and the yellow poster aimed at the same voters, you can see that both claim to have a solid “scientific” evidence that only the corresponding party can stop the red tide.
Let us know what you think of these leaflets by tweeting us @WeAreLDT or by commenting below using Facebook. Please share if you found this interesting.
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