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December 30, 2006


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» From Search Marketing Gurus from John Edwards 08 Blog
pa href=http://www.searchmarketinggurus.com/search_marketing_gurus/2006/12/barack_obama_do.htmlArticle here/a/p pBarack Obama doesnt know what a widget is, neither does John Kerry, Rudy Giuliani,... [Read More]


Great move by the Edwards camp. Someone knew who to reach out to instead of some neophyte social media type. How they keep it going for the entire campaign will be interesting to see.

Of course I know what a widget is! The big guys used to grab my underpants up like that all the time at college.

>>These next two years are going to be interesting ones as Internet Marketing is going to meet Politics head on.<<

I think these next two years are going to be embarrassing ones as candidates on both sides go out of their way to look cool for a bunch of nerds and geeks.

I wish the system would reward politicians who spend more time on ideas and policy, and penalize the ones that focus on marketing. I'll take substance over style any day, but I believe I'm in the minority on this count. :-)

How about instead of a marketing plan or knowing enough buzz words to get the "internet vote", or hanging out with bloggers, they actually come up with some decent policies and actually do something besides defend their own party and attack the other party?

Just a crazy thought.

If Obama, Clinton et al are out buying blogging/social media books, they need to be shot. They have better things to do.

Now if their key PR people don't ALREADY know about blogging and all the attendant trickery/apparatus, they also need to be shot... er, fired!

This is (almost) 2007 MAN!

- Alister

Great post. It will be interesting.

*I work with John Edwards

Obama has a podcast, a popular Facebook profile, plenty of YouTube videos, an email list, and a slick website (barackobama.com). He was even the coleader of the bill that created a searchable internet database of government grants. Not sure what you're talking about.

If a candidate doesn't know what a widget is, I say -- who cares?

I can't help but think most tech people are a bit elitist/snobbish about what politicians should know about tech. I suppose its the same for meat packers, nurses, single moms, etc. - basically any interest group.

I just spent a few days with Edwards, and I don't think he knows what a widget is. The concept of a widget, sure. More importantly, he has deep knowledge on serious issues like poverty and immigration. I think that's where he should devote his intellectual energy.

The mark of a good leader is someone who can hire people that are smarter than him in certain areas, and that's exactly what he's done with his online efforts. Thus, people like Ryan Montoya, Mathew Gross, Andrew Baron and are on board, and they're among the best & brightest.

-->David - Yes, it definitely is going to be different! :)

-->Matt - I agree totally. Point of what I wrote is to say - hey look, where' in a great place right now, where watching something happening in our industry by deliberate actions. How the candidates use these technologies and marketing is totally up to them and that's basically going to make the difference in reaching more of what they perceive as their audience. :)

-->James - Again, point of what I wrote wasn't to them coming up with decent policies - that's delving into politics which isn't really the point of this blog. More to the point this was to show how the candidates are likely going to show their base and other possible constituents what their "decent" policy ideas are. At this point in time, Edwards isn't even in the senate anymore and can't broker new policies - but he can offer his ideas on policies through this marketing medium so his base knows.

-->Alister - To a degree I agree, but the candidates should be aware of the concepts - whether they read a few pages in a book, a few articles online, they should be somewhat familiar enough to know to hire a very good internet strategist - just like Edwards has. And I agree if they've got one and they aren't doing these things - they should be fired!

-->Jake - I've been to Obama's site (in fact I'm currently reading his book). The biggest thing he's got there is to sign up for email (that's highly visible). He does have links to audio/video, but isn't really promoting his podcast. The point is he's not using Internet Marketing it to promote himself, its more "happenstance" for Barack at this point. There is a caveat here - he hasn't announced he's running yet. With that said, Edwards is the first to announce his intent and I'm sure that all of these candidates are going to look at the Edwards site and try to emulate it's marketing practices, which is a compliment to Edward's Internet Strategy team.

-->Chuck - First, thanks for commenting here. I read what you've wrote, via Scoble's post. I agree - the concept is what he knows about (but I think Ryan might have told him now LOL). And I TOTALLY agree that he should be concentrating on the serious issues - what color a widget is, or what font is in it - is totally up to his internet strategy team. Point being - Edwards learned a lot in these last 4 years that the internet is another medium he can use to reach his base. Its a place to "market" to. Edwards is definitely on the ball perhaps field lengths beyond the others - because he's got such a great team (kudos to them!)

Just some other thoughts - I wouldn't dare preach politics from this blog. I've been on the internet way to long and I know there's two things you try to stay away from in a professional industry blog, chat or forum 1) religion 2) politics. Point here was to show Edwards is making things happen in internet marketing by forethought - not happenstance. We're seeing a branch of our industry come to fruition here in the next two years - watch, take notes and ponder how it might work outside of the "political niche" :)

I agree completely!

Sorry for being surly. :-) Yes, I think what Edwards doing is great and the other candidates could learn a thing or two, or three, or...

The internet has unquestionably become a vital tool for communication and democracy, and we're probably just scratching the surface. My worry is that geekerati will overinflate the importance of a MySpace page or an RSS feed, and judge their fitness for office on those Web 2.0 requirements.

Anyway, thanks for the discussion and happy new year!

Mitt Romney knows what a widget is.

-->Patriot Blogger - I read about that over the weekend. So on the Republican side of campaigning, Romney's ahead of the pack. :)

Hey, that's ok. Nether does my sister. lol. How about a widget that is useful.

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