On Political Marketing…

UPDATE #2:  Well, I am excited to see Social|Median was acquired yesterday.  I used them as a proof point of the power of context for social media startups.  Thats all I’m saying about context for now.

UPDATE:  Now that the election is over, much is being discussed about the campaigns.  Tonight I sat in on the Social Media Club LA panel on the Election and Social Media (thanks @jackiepeters).  I was really impressed by James Lee (from the Lee Strategy Group) as he brought the numbers to the table – thank you James!  The conversation had me thinking back to this post and the linked article.  Read it to get some insight into the marketing of politics.  My vote for all 2008 marketing awards goes to Obama’s team.

One observation is that this election was one by selling the highest level message.  I’d argue that McCain was more in the weeds and didn’t connect it as well.  Many people in this country were/are disenchanted and were looking for a glimmer of hope – and Barack was selling hope…   Enjoy the article.


Here is a quick post on the marketing of politics (I really wish I had more time to dig into this one, but too much good stuff on my plate). Given everything that is going on with our country, our economy and the political race, I thought a few people might find one of my favorite articles interesting (particularly those of you who like maps, models and data). The article, The Application of MECCAS to Advertising Strategy Development for the 1984 Reagan-Bush Presidential Campaign, uncovers how powerful market research techniques can be for political strategists (brought to you by the folks at POPULUS Inc). I used this paper as the foundation of much of the work I did on my first big project at IBM – applying a similar methodology to the competitive landscape of business/IT decision making. We took ours a step further and applied cool statical models (SEM – not search marketing) so that it was highly quantitative, customer experience focused (not advertising) and outcomes driven. Anyway, check the article out to see how Reagan’s strategist used models to understand the hearts and minds of the American electorate in 1984. As you check out the maps, you can imagine how todays maps would shape up. Here are the before and after maps.

US Electorate - AUGUST 1984

Hierarchical Map #1 - US Electorate - AUGUST 1984 (POPULUS Inc.)

US Electorate - NOVEMBER 1984

Hierarchical Map #3 - US Electorate - NOVEMBER 1984 (POPULUS Inc.)

I’d love to see the maps for today and how they’ve changed over the last 30 days. Check out the article and let me know what you think. It is indeed a challenging and interesting time in our great country.
Back to work!

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