Signature Collection Tips



Door-to-door canvassing can work for races requiring a small number of signatures. However, if you are seeking to get large numbers of signatures in a short time, you will need to find a place where lots of people are passing by. Examples include:  


Community festivals  


Community-wide yard sales  

Public auctions  

Post office - Public property; but foot traffic may not be very high  

Colleges - Public property; but may not have high percentages of eligible voters  

Supermarkets - Lots of foot traffic, but you have to get the permission of the store. Certain chains (e.g. Giant Food Stores in Virginia) work better in particular areas.  

Government offices - DMVs can be good.  


If you are petitioning the customers of a store, get them on the way out. This helps you avoid getting the same person more than once, and also reduces the chance that they will complain to management about you bothering them.  

Make sure you don't block customers' way; or you could get kicked out of that location.  

If you see other people soliciting customers (e.g. for a cancer fundraiser), make friends with them. Give them a generous donation. If you can get them on your side, they will help you by steering people your way. 

Carry lots of petition boards, so you can take advantage of "social proof." That is, if people see a few others signing, they are more likely to sign. It becomes kind of a juggling act handling all those petition boards, but you can get lots of signatures this way. 

Set up a small card table to hold the petition boards you're not working on.  

Each time a petition sheet is completed, fold it up and put it in your pocket so it doesn't get lost. When you get home, put it in a folder in a safe place. These petitions represent hours of hard work - don't let them get lost! Many petition drives have failed due to heart-rending incidents of petitions being misplaced and not found until after the turn-in deadline.  

Smile and act confident; your chances of getting signatures will increase. Shrug off rejection and consider each failure as a learning experience that will help you become a better petitioner.  

If one location consistently isn't working well, try another one. Don't waste too much time on locations where people just aren't signing










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