Campaign Insider

When email pitching, less can lead to more

by Sean J. Miller / Feb 03 2014

Fundraising consultants often stress that simplicity is key in email pitches. President Obama famously raised the most money from his 2012 e-solicitations with the subject line: "hey." But keeping it simple isn't just about copywriting. It applies to list targeting, too.

Brett Schenker, a deliverability specialist at NGP VAN, advises emailing less people to get a higher response rate. Why? Because if a campaign blasts its whole list, it'll likely hit so-called

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Supporting gay marriage good business for GOPers?

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 31 2014

The GOP has a complicated relationship with the gay rights movement but increasingly Republican consultants are willing to work for or support marriage equality efforts.

In Oregon, GOP consultant Elaine Franklin has helped launch Freedom Oregon with other prominent Republicans. The group is supporting a ballot measure to legalize same-sex marriage in the state. GOP consultant Dan Lavey, a regional president of Gallatin Public Affairs, along with fundraiser Lori Hardwick

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Will a new generation of consultants be the Obama legacy? 

Will a new generation of consultants be the Obama legacy? 

by C&E Staff / Jan 30 2014

Even before President Obama's address Tuesday, observers were paying close attention to his efforts to "secure his legacy." With limited time before he becomes a lame duck, the president used his State of the Union to proclaim 2014 a "year of action." But whatever action Obama takes in the next 12 months, the reality is his legacy may be better served by those who worked on his two successful White House campaigns.  

The operatives

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Consultants weigh new satellite TV addressability

Consultants weigh new satellite TV addressability

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 28 2014

A new partnership between DirecTV and Dish Network could help campaigns improve their TV ad targeting. 

The satellite TV providers, which together reach nearly one-in-five U.S. households, announced they're creating a joint addressable advertising platform, which will allow "participating statewide political campaigns to target their TV ads at the household level within 20+ million DIRECTV and DISH homes," the company said in a release

Addressability, a term used to define the targeted advertising to

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In fundraising, silence has power

In fundraising, silence has power

by Kirsten Borman / Jan 28 2014

What do Beethoven’s 5th symphony, a library and an effective fundraising ask have in common? They all require silence in order to be effective. 

If a candidate is especially new at the fundraising process, they’ll often rush through each step of their fundraising calls to get to the critical “ask” portion. They’re in such a hurry that they scarcely give their donor a moment to get a word in edgewise. Whatever the reasoning, don’t

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Rising Star Nominations Now Open

Rising Star Nominations Now Open

by C&E Staff / Jan 28 2014

Since 1988, Campaigns & Elections has recognized the up-and-comers of the campaign world with its coveted Rising Star award. Over the years, Rising Star recipients have climbed to the heights of politics, launching dozens of successful consulting firms and serving at the highest levels of state and federal campaigns.        

Among the inaugural class of Rising Stars: David Axelrod, Alex Castellanos, Rahm Emanuel, Ben Ginsberg, Celinda Lake and Mark Mellman. C&E Rising Stars have served

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VoterTrove teams with CampaignGrid

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 27 2014

VoterTrove has forged a new partnership with CampaignGrid that will allow its campaign clients to take greater control over their digital advertising.

The Austin, Texas-based start up provides its clients what founder Justin Gargiulo calls a "central data source," which integrates robocalls, auto polls and overall data management. Its new partnership with CampaignGrid means that campaigns can match their internal and voter file data with cookies in the D.C.-based firm's catalogue to optimize online ad

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Sunlight Foundation publishes Singh client roster 

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 24 2014

The FBI is continuing to investigate the San Diego conspiracy that saw consultant Ravi Singh charged in a scheme to help a Mexican businessman funnel money into the city's mayoral elections. 

Now, government transparency groups are getting in on the case. The Sunlight Foundation published a piece Friday that includes a database of Singh's clients. The D.C.-based consultant has a GOP-heavy client roster, according to the data culled from FEC reports. 

Records

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Bob Shrum takes USC appointment

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 23 2014

The longtime Democratic consultant and speech writer is set to start an academic appointment at the University of Southern California in June.

Shrum, whose career includes stints on the presidential campaigns of John Kerry and Al Gore, promised to parade an array of special guests from the campaign world in front of his undergraduate students. 

“I think one of the great advantages of L.A. is that everyone comes here one time or another. If we’re opportunistic and

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The Gut: Running GOP campaigns since 1854

The Gut: Running GOP campaigns since 1854

by Vincent Harris / Jan 22 2014

In the introduction of Sasha Issenberg’s “The Victory Lab,” he talks with Democratic consultant Steve Rosenthal about how decisions are made on campaigns. Rosenthal was quoted as saying, “Most things are done with only one check.” He defined “one check” as nothing more than an individual’s “gut” instinct.  

Gut instinct continues to be the primary form of decision making within Republican campaigns, some of which spend millions of dollars on inefficient media buys based

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Consultant charged in San Diego conspiracy

by Sean J. Miller / Jan 22 2014

Ravneet "Ravi" Singh was one of two people charged Tuesday with conspiring to help a rich Mexican funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars to the campaigns of mayoral candidates in San Diego in 2012-13.

The candidates aren't named in the documents but two are believed to be District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis (R) and former mayor Bob Filner (D), who were competing in the nonpartisan 2012 mayoral primary.

According to the complaint filed in the U.S.

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Will docu-style TV ads help elect a mayor? 

by Sean J. Miller  / Jan 21 2014

Some candidates, despite their best efforts, have trouble appearing human and relatable to voters. Sam Dealey, a journalist-turned media consultant, thinks docu-style advertising is the remedy. 

"Republicans, particularly, have a problem with just letting candidates be themselves -- whether it's Bob Dole or Mitt Romney," he says. "But after the election, when all the consultants and all the handlers go away, they go on Leno or they go on Letterman and suddenly they're totally different

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