Monday, October 20, 2008

Robo Calling - Close, but not quite

So, not every is pleased with McCain's new robo call campaign. Though, I think he's on the right track in many respects.

Look, the guys is down in the polls and his opponent has ridiculous amounts of money. Like all small folks going after the big guys, he's going to have to pull out some guerrilla tactics to beat Obama. My guess is that robo calls are one of the main guerrilla approaches he's using. After all, are cheap and reach a huge audience.

The Gotcha

With all that said, I can't imagine that robo calls are all that effective at changing the candidate's image in the mind's of the voter. In other words, do they really work? Besides, is this really the best way to get your message out?

My first thought was that the technology was wrong. In this day and age, if you want to reach thousands of people cheaply, we have YouTube, SMS, heck, even e-mail. I mean, robotic phone calls? That's one step above a mass telegram.

I was thinking that this was another example of the McCain campaign not quite getting the power of the web. But, upon further reflection, I think this isn't actually the case.

The Real Gotcha

Let's say, instead of robo calls, McCain did a mass e-mail. We wouldn't term this a clever guerrilla campaign - we'd call it what it is, SPAM. And that, in fact, is the problem with the robo calls. They're spam, pure and simple. And spam is evil.

The fact is, there have to be guerrilla maneuvers that the McCain camp can use that don't fall into the spam category. Regardless of the technology level. Heck, maybe low tech is good. Maybe a clever button or sticker campaign could work. Or, better yet, maybe you can mix low tech with high tech - buttons and stickers with an SMS number to get more information. What if you bought a few less TV ads, and sent out hundreds of flip camcorders to supporters with the suggestion to record their McCain message, and then forward on the camcorder to a friend? OK, crazy, but you get the idea.

McCain should definitely use his underdog status to his advantage. He should definitely avoid fighting Obama in the traditional, expensive, mediums where he'll probably lose out to his budget. He just shouldn't throw out his soul in the process.

Here's the deal - if someone tells me the address of where to send it, I'll be glad to ship McCain a copy of The Purple Cow so he can get back on track. I'll even send it express, as I know time is of the essence.

No comments:

Post a Comment