18 février 2004

Blogs as political fundraising tools

Everyone has been reading about blogs as communication tools in the context of political campaigns. Blogs are now also being used as fundraising tools.

Here is the story of Ben Chandler, the Democrat who won the special election to the Congress yesterday.

With an investment of only $2,000, and in less than two weeks, the campaign has raked in between $45,000 and $50,000 in contributions from blog readers, and that number is growing every day, said Chandler campaign manager Mark Nickolas.[...]

"It has been phenomenal," Nickolas said. "I get an e-mail every time there's a contribution -- and we know from the e-mail the source is a blog when they come through that avenue. Since the morning of Jan. 29, the FEC [filing] cut-off, I've put all those e-mails in a separate file. So far there are 711." [...]

Nickolas said the contributions from blog readers are "averaging in the $40 to $50 range." The vast number of contributions are between $20 and $25, but every so often a $1,000 or $2,000 contribution will pop up to "boost the average."

While Nickolas was initially hoping simply to make back the campaign's $2,000 investment, the gamble has brought in more than 20 times that amount.


I'm really surprised by their results. I've had client set up secure fundraising sections within their websites with very interesting success but, for some reason, I didn't expect that using banner advertising on third-party (albeit sympathetic) blogs would work as well as it seems to have worked in this case. Kudos to them.

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