In the world of digital politics, local campaigns can easily get distracted by shiny new toys and often overlook some of the most basic tech infrastructure needs. I’m not discounting the importance of setting-up some of these outposts, but when resources and staffing are limited, you want to take advantage of every resource available that can maximize your campaign’s efficiency. One such resource is Google Apps.
Among its many features, Google Apps allows you to create custom email addresses such as email@example.com that are tied to email accounts using the Gmail platform. You can also use Google’s other products such as Calendar, Chat and Docs with each account. The free version of Google Apps allows for up to 10 free user accounts with these core features. Google used to offer 50 free user accounts per domain until it wised up (There are 47 firstname.lastname@example.org email accounts with your name on it.) For most small campaigns, 10 user accounts will go a long way in getting a team started. Larger campaigns can upgrade to Google Apps for Business for $5/user/month and receive more features and unlimited user accounts. All you need is a domain but if you don’t have one, Google will help you find one.
So the next time you’ve got your Salsa or NGP email loaded and ready to go but your “From:” email address is email@example.com and you really don’t want to get all of those reply emails, make sure you’ve set-up Google Apps for your campaign. Need help setting this up? Shoot me an email and I’ll get it in my Google Apps account. ; )
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