How to Stand Out in Student Elections

Spreading the word of your candidacy is crucial.

Running in a school election can be daunting to those candidates who are not the most popular or well-known students in the school. To spread the word of your candidacy and stand out from your opponents, you must run a well-advertised, unique and memorable campaign. By campaigning on an issue you truly believe in, you will be able to stand out as a genuine and principled member of the school community. Additionally, it helps to infuse a bit of creativity and pizazz into your campaign.

Create a catchy slogan. The most memorable slogans are brief with an element of poetry either with wordplay, alliteration or rhyme. Your slogan should feature your first or last name so people know whom to associate it with. Include your slogan on all your campaign advertisements to ensure it gets embedded into the minds of the student body.

Choose a simple, single-issue campaign platform. For example, run on the promise to bring health-food vending machines to campus or to negotiate the school's dress code. Include this on your campaign advertisements. Give the student voters a cause to vote for in addition to a candidate.

Give away something. Most people cannot resist the appeal of giveaways and will appreciate the generous offering. Choose a candy that matches your personality and hand it out on campus in the lead-up to the election. Place a sticky label on the candies that has your name and campaign slogan on it. For a more personal touch, bake treats such as cookies, brownies or cupcakes. Wrap the items in plastic wrap and place the sticker on the wrap.

Create an official campaign page on a social networking site such as Facebook. Update the page daily with videos and blog posts about your campaign. Use this tool to connect to students you don't know yet and to build a momentum for your candidacy.

Make a unique or humorous statement by doing something unconventional on the day of the election. For example, dress up in an ape costume and hand out free bananas that say, "If you don't vote for me, I'll go bananas." You can also ask the principal if you can do a rap about your campaign over the intercom or do a break-dance routine at lunchtime. Think of a way to surprise the student body that shows your enthusiasm for the election.

Margaret Kay has worked as a freelance writer since 2009. She has worked as a contributor to "The Gonzaga Bulletin." Kay has recently completed her Master of Theology in media ethics at the University of Edinburgh.