Mike Bloomberg’s 2009 mayoral campaign had a luxury few election campaigns do: no need to fundraise. However, while money was less of a concern for the New York City Mayor’s re-election team, lead digital strategist Jonah Seiger was dedicated to measuring success of online search and display advertising, and even social media interaction.
“Unlike the traditional political campaign, we were not soliciting contributions. In many ways, that made our job a lot harder,” said Seiger during last week’s Social Media Week event sponsored by ClickZ, and held in conjunction with Personal Democracy Forum. “I think it’s easier to get people engaged in a campaign when they’re making a personal investment out of their pocket.”
Seiger and the campaign recognized the importance of Facebook and Twitter to build engagement and propel get-out-the-vote efforts. And, they used a variety of measurement methods to help gauge the connection between online engagement and real-world votes. The practice of measuring social media’s impact on voting is still quite young, and will surely become more sophisticated even during the next big round of mid-term elections later this year. But Seiger’s presentation, featured in the video below, offers a glimpse into how Bloomberg ’09 handled it.
Following the presentation, I had the opportunity, along with Andrew Rasiej of Personal Democracy Forum, to speak with Seiger about the digital campaign. The discussion was one both social media and political junkies will appreciate – and hopefully learn from.
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