A Framework for Political Crowdfunding: Lessons From President Obama
The recent presidential election in the United States was the most expensive race in history, with Mitt Romney and Barack Obama spending about $1 billion respectively on their efforts to win the White House. While both candidates raised hundreds of millions of dollars, their methodology was quite different and offer some important practices for the future of campaign financing.Last Tuesday, the Union of Local Authorities hosted representatives from Israeli municipalities at the Dead Sea to discuss the upcoming municipal elections in 2013. I sat on a panel alongside two deputy mayors and five marketing experts discussing the political landscape and larger meditations on campaign financing in Israel. The recent presidential election in the United States was the most expensive race in history, with Mitt Romney and Barack Obama spending about $1 billion respectively on their efforts to win the White House. While both candidates raised hundreds of millions of dollars, their methodology was quite different and offer some important practices for the future of campaign financing. With the upcoming municipal elections in Israel in 2013 and election spending soaring worldwide, the following is a case study of President Barack Obama’s crowdfunding strategy and the roles social media, grassroots campaigning, and small donations played in his re-election campaign. Fundraising Profiles: Mitt Romney: Followed a traditional fundraising route, accepting unlimited contributions from billionaires, millionaires, and corporations through Super PAC’s. Romney raised $384 million in individual donations, $70 million of which are considered ‘small donations’ or donations of $200 or less.
- Grassroots Campaign: Focus on the Local Segments
- Raise Money Through Small Donors & Give Them Perks
- Social Media Presence
- Sandra Fluke, a well-known feminist and advocate for gay rights sent emails to Obama’s email base, discussing contraception, rape, and health choices, issues which are critical for many female voters.
- Kal Penn, an Indian-American actor and cultural figure among younger voters, sent an email to potential donors stating “‘Friend, (yes, we’re friends’),” appealing to the younger voting bloc through a friendly banter.
- Lena Dunham, a writer, actress, and director, is a prominent figure in the young ‘indie’ population. Dunham created a video encouraging young people to get out and vote.
- Dinner with George Clooney: The Obama campaign raised $15 million by raffling off chances to attend a fundraising dinner in May at the home of actor George Clooney. Supporters donated an average of $23 in hopes of winning a ticket to the event — propelling the fundraiser’s total haul to $15 million when coupled with the $40,000 individual tickets.
- Dinner with Two Presidents: For a $3 donation, individuals were entered into a lottery to have dinner with President Obama and President Bill Clinton, airfare and accommodations included.
- Obama Classic: For another $3, individuals were entered into a lottery to attend the Obama Classic basketball game, an event that brought together sports heroes like Michael Jordan, Carmelo Anthony, and Mike Woodson.
Leave a Reply
SUBSCRIBE FOR UPDATES
|Crowdsourcing Week 2014 Global
Apr 7-11, 2014
|The Future of Ideas, Innovation, & Creativity|