Now that it appears the frontrunners are clear (my Libertarian son would disagree), it looks like both camps are settling in and the online strategies have commenced! The Whitehouse website itself has been transformed into one giant landing page for capturing email addresses, requiring the visitor to click through to get to any information:
The Whitehouse has also been regularly releasing infographics… on the National Debt, gasoline prices, and even troop levels in Iraq. I'm pretty impressed that these methods have been adopted – but a bit disappointed that they are a bit skewed in the favor of the administration. I'd like to see some infographics on what isn't going well either – and some explanation around those efforts for full transparency.
The campaign website is also incorporating additional tactics. The Life of Julia, for example, is an interactive informational graphic that takes a visitor through how the campaign wishes to assist women throughout their life:
Releasing such information comes with a price, though, and the Life of Julia implementation has been largely criticized and even reconstructed – here's the Life of Julia according to Libertarians:
Mitt Romney's campaign is incorporating the latest technologies as well, with infographics that span from the Middle Class, Youth, Hispanic infographics that present a different look at the economy and its impact on these segments. As well, they've provided this analogy of the federal budget:
The Republicans still seem a bit slow on the take when it comes to really connecting with people via social mediums. The Life of Julia may be largely criticized, but it's also a tactic that connects directly with the female voter and is smartly segmented into each age group. The Life of Julia isn't going to change the vote of the critics… but it could sway the vote of the targeted audience who may have those same concerns that President Obama is identifying. That's not a bad strategy.
That said – my overall opinion of the marketing for the re-election of President Obama doesn't appear nearly as polished as his original election strategy. I put up a tongue in cheek post (that got a lot of folks angry), asking if Obama was the next Vista based on the incredible job they did. I wasn't criticizing President Obama – I was and am still impressed with the momentum and captivating campaign he ran that captured the attention of the American youth and the swing voters.
I believe there's a very different tone to the current election marketing strategy. It no longer has the same idealistic optimism. Given the last few years of a terrible economy and massive spending, the tone is a bit solemn… with quite a bit of spin on the numbers, much more accentuation of the positives, and tons of excuses for the negative. I'm not saying it's a bad campaign – just a very different tone than the original. We'll see what it produces, though! Looking forward to much more content marketing for all the parties involved!
NOTE: Politics is always difficult to cover on a marketing blog and, despite every effort, I'm sure those of you who are ardent supporters of each candidate will criticize my coverage here. I'm not trying to bash anyone or support anyone – just comment on the strategies being deployed. Please save your trolling for the candidates and other political sites.