Originally published in CampaignTech Newsletter on Jan. 7, 2022
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++++++++ About Last Year The Year That Was in Digital Politics This is the first CampaignTech newsletter of ’22, but it’s also our first chance to highlight our final tech column of ’21 penned by C&E columnist and Epolitics.com Founder Colin Delany. ICYMI, Delany looked back at the year that was in political tech to draw some lessons for the next 12 months. A couple of his key takeaways: Microtargeting Ourselves to Death: "If campaigns spend too much time and money chasing a few predefined "priority" voters, they risk missing a huge swath of the actual electorate. Some potential supporters won’t fit into neat data models , for example, while others will fall through the profile-matching cracks at the ad-vendor level. Sometimes, microtargeting can depend on little more than a guess: that a campaign knows exactly who’s going to respond to what." Influencing the Influencers: "Several political vendors have developed systems to try to match candidates with influencers, breaking them down geographically, by topic and other factors. But most campaigns won’t be working with one of those firms in 2022, so they may have to find the right voices on their own. At that point, influencer outreach starts to look a lot like traditional media relations, involving research, direct messages and phone calls. Campaigns can and should recruit supporters to act as ambassadors in their own digital circles, but few will have big enough followings to reach enough voters to supplant paid digital advertising. If influencer marketing is going to take off broadly, and at scale, we’ll need recruiting and management tools that work as well for state legislative candidates as for Bernie Sanders." Read Delany’s full column here.
++++++++ About This Year Political Tech Predictions for ‘22
It’s tradition at C&E to publish in the first week of January a list of predictions for the year ahead from top campaign operatives. And the predictions for 2022 are well worth a read. Some digital predictions that stood out to us:
Chuck Rocha, President, Solidarity Strategies
"I think there will be more money spent on YouTube in Spanish in 2022 than Univision."
Patrick O’Keefe, Director, Customer Success, Anedot
"The move by organizations to first-party data will be swift and could lead to new movements in data sharing. This increased data sharing may lead to blowback from weary supporters who say: ‘I didn’t sign up for your list."
Genevieve Wilkins, SVP of Creative at ROKK Solutions
"The TikTok TV app home-viewing experience is going to be a catalyst for companies to develop innovative ways to integrate their TikTok presence with traditional TV advertising, print, in-store, and out-of-home marketing."
John Rowley, Founder, CounterPoint Messaging
"We’ll see more investment in the science behind how to make content and ads more emotionally resonant on the Democratic side since we too often bring a policy knife to an emotional gunfight."
Dean Petrone, CEO, Go Big Media, Inc.
"Despite more stringent online privacy laws, political content suppression and further limiting of political targeting, candidates, PACs, and other organizations will spend record sums on Facebook and Google in 2022."
Check out all the predictions (digital and non-digital) over at C&E.