I hope that we will look back and realize that this election was the first time that a candidate really harnessed the power of the Internet to win the presidency. Sure in ’04 Howard Dean built a following using the Internet especially meetup.com, but we know how that turned out. In ’08 and beyond I believe the Internet will be a vital tool for campaigns, and I think that is a good thing.
Ron Paul has leveraged the Internet like no candidate before him. Dr. Paul has used the Internet to spread his message, which is clear and unique. From this message he has gained attention and considerable funding. I think the reason for his success is that his platforms speak to heavy Internet users and he is genuine. He has also been very lucky in getting the support of Internet giants such as Google. Dr. Pauls consistency to sensible ideas have resonated with people fed up with the mainstream media.
Barack (has my vote) is using the Internet extremely well. Given Barack’s message of hope for the future and his appeal to young voters, it’s essential that he gets this right. The Internet fits well with Obama’s strengths, the greatest being a charismatic speaker. Take a look at the video below released an hour or two after the State of the Union address. It’s direct and conversational just like something you would find on YouTube. It cost nothing to create and it’s another important point of contact to get his message across.
And Barack’s message is great. He is speaking of unity and hope, how can anyone argue against this?
The Obama website is also phenomenal. It is the best designed site and very easy to navigate. A few minutes after arriving at the website I was looking at a google map of my neighborhood with events noted. 5 minutes later I had RSVP’ed and received contact details. It’s extremely important to keep things simple if you want to get people active.
Now take a look at Hillary’s website. The design isn’t bad but I think the UE has a lot to be desired. For instance when you rollover “Take Action” you’re presented with 11 choices – Everything from login to plan a party. Including some very unclear actions like Hillraisers and Hillblazers – no idea either.
The biggest disappointment with Hillary’s site is evident below. Where Dr. Paul and Barack Obama do a great job with their video, Clinton’s video is very sub par. She has basically posted her commercials on the website. We all know how much people love to watch commercials online. They are neither engaging, emotional or believable, and I feel this is a symptom of the old world thinking that has caused me not to vote for her.
Although her clips are the easiest to embed.