Lessons Learned from Obama's Mobile Campaign

What did Mr. Obama’s mobile marketing team understand?

First, they understood the reach of mobile messaging. Mobile phones are with in reach constantly and around the clock. Therefore this is the most immediate and most important messaging mechanism available.

Second, the messaging was kept personal and relevant both to the person and the medium. Supporters felt they were connected and that the candidate spoke with them. It was personal.

Third, the messaging was engaging asking for action, support and Mr. Obama wasn’t afraid to ask for help through his text messaging.

Fourth, mobile was a strategy, and not a tactic. There was a long-term plan.

Mr. Obama’s mobile marketing team was sensitive to the time, place, appeal and device of the target audience. They used mobile as a targeted, mass medium.

  • An SMS message to rally attendance when Mr. Obama was in town,
  • Asking for assistance to get-out-the-vote at the primaries and the general election,
  • Requests for donations,
  • Announcing Joe Biden’s selection as running mate to an estimated 2.9 million opted-in supporters, a
  • A thank you message of “We-did-it-together” on Election Night

“We just made history. All of this happened because you gave your time, talent and passion to this campaign. All of this happened because of you. Barack.”

Fifth, the content of the mobile campaign, message and imagery was consitent with Mr. Obama’s multichannel (TV/Web/Print etc) activities. The mobile campaign was also able to gives legs to other channels, announcing appearances on the Daily Show or New York Times interviews.

All the mobile vehicles used, including SMS, generated foot traffic at primaries and rallies, created a sense of community, raised funds for the campaign and eventually influenced the decision made in the ballot box on Election Day.

Finally, the overall mobile effort came across as genuine. The mobile messaging didn't distort or lead the candidate. Rather the Mr Obama at the early stages was able to bypass big media's agenda or distortions and reach people directly.

“The best ad is a good product.”

A Tool for the Presidency

The mobile messaging tool is now part of the presidency. The White House has maintained an SMS short code 62262 for two way communication with people directly.

Mr. Obama is the new occupant of the White House not just because he’s shrewd, but because he worked with the smartest tools to connect to his target audience with a focused message. Yes, you can – with mobile.

blog/lessons_learned_from_obama_s_mobile_campaign.txt · Last modified: 2009/12/22 06:41 by root
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