Who’s minding the Online Store ?

As I sit at my desk here in Connecticut working on my next business venture, I can’t understand for the life of me what is going on within our political system. If it wasn’t enough that we have been “treated” to an American idol type primary campaign, now with the Romney nomination a certainty, we get an early glimpse of how the republicans are going to wage the Fall Campaign.  The Obama online camp is bunkered in Chicago working 24/7 on leveraging every online opportunity available to assemble & motivate  a gargantuan community of supporters and evangelicals for the President’s reelection. To the contrary  the GOP is quite literally running “help wanted ads” for web designers to take their strategy into “the 21st Century”. After spending the last six months documenting the incredible rise of the Obama faithful online and the microscopic and embarassing effort being waged by “pick a republican” I am at a loss for words.

When I think even more deeply about the marketing failure that is the Republican online strategy; my brain hurts. Please stop robo calling my house asking for donations to the party and to Mitt and others.  While I was never in favor of the “Do Not Call” legislation…these nightly calls are really starting to bother me. Until the republicans wake up to the fact that they are being totally out classed online by the Obama campaign…I don’t feel any obligation to watch my hard earned dollars get flushed down the drain by marketing efforts that don’t move the needle. Keep spending all those millions of dollars on television…at the expense of the media that really matters in the 2012 Election cycle. Keep listening to the dinosaur leadership that reinforces the credibility of direct mail and yard signs despite every peice of research and data that documents that the American voting public is spending more time online and within social media venues than any other communications channel.

Today…yet another example. In gathering information from Google on Mitt Romney and potential VP prospects; I inadvertently googled “Mitt Romney Website”.  The Google search resulted in showcasing a couple of paid Romney ads at the top of the page. Just below (above the fold) two organic listings…One that referenced Dog Lovers and their lack of appreciation for Mitt Romney’s latest comment on the “dog on the roof” matter. The second listing referenced only by the headline “Romney’s Incoherent Russia Policy”. During my stint as CEO of Zeta Interactive, we worked with many customers on optimizing both paid and organic search to bolster the strength of their brands. This is common 101 basic search work that needs to be done here. Surely Somebody in the GOP or Romney camp is looking for ways to push these organic search results below the fold…? Apparently not…..or to be kind…not successfully….

What continues to trouble me even more is that this election cycle is not about appointing a town commissioner or the dog warden in a local town. These folks are running for the most powerful seat of power in our country if not the world. Is it just me or are you too worried about the fact that those who make promises about their ability to  strengthen our economy, create new jobs, restore our relative standing in the world & provide quality healthcare etc. are the same folks that haven’t figured out the basic components on how to market themselves in the digital age.

With each passing day….I am getting more concerned….for all of us.


Al D


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