Going mobile

The remarkable thing about the shift to mobile is that it's increasingly seen in rich media


Here is a fascinating article in Foreign Policy from our friend and colleague Eric Schnurer, president of the consulting firm Public Works and a frequent contributor to USA Today and The Atlantic, among other publications. The breadth and depth of Eric's policy expertise is remarkable, and he's chosen a fascinating topic for his article E-Stonia and the Future of the Cyberstate.

A Reformer In Albany

When a group of Assembly members met last month to consider the fate of Sheldon Silver, they turned to a new member from Long Island to assess the strength of federal corruption charges against their longtime leader: former Eastern District prosecutor Todd Kaminsky.
— Capital New York

Here's a great profile of our client, Todd Kaminsky. Todd is a former assistant DA who has prosecuted some of New York's most significant public corruption cases, and whose knowledge and skill are sadly needed in Albany. He is playing a leadership role in crafting ethics reform and serving as a leading voice on the issue for the Assembly. 

2015 Gates Foundation Annual Letter

I use an iPhone and an iMac, but Bill Gates is my real innovation hero. The Gates Foundation continues to be at the forefront of fighting disease and poverty. Their Annual Letter is a great primer on that work and the road ahead. Take a look. -- David

[T]he next 15 years will see major breakthroughs for most people in poor countries. They will be living longer and in better health. They will have unprecedented opportunities to get an education, eat nutritious food, and benefit from mobile banking. These breakthroughs will be driven by innovation in technology-ranging from new vaccines and hardier crops to much cheaper smartphones and tablets ... The rich world will keep getting exciting new advances too, but the improvements in the lives of the poor will be far more fundamental.
— Bill and Melinda Gates

Hart Research 2014 Summary

Happy New Year!

We first worked with the Hart team back in 2007 in the early days of the '08 Obama presidential campaign in Nevada. Check out their factsheet of 100 2014 findings from "1% of Romney 2012 voters say that looking out for the interests of women is one of the most important issues in deciding their vote in 2014" to "100% of white women under age 50 don't have positive feelings toward Vladimir Putin." 

Global Strategy Group's GSG Compass

"...these days [voters] would have trouble believing God himself was telling the truth in a campaign ad." 

To be effective, campaign communications have to be believed. That's more and more difficult, even with third parties offering verification. So how do we communicate in ways that can move the needle? Check out GSG's take

Why Republicans should embrace immigration reform, in one chart - via WaPo

The Washington Post


“CPAC showcased that deep divisions remain among Republicans over whether to pursue immigration reform. The conservative interpretation of the GOP dilemma appears to be that passing reform is a no-no because it would be a gift to the hated Obama…

“A new analysis performed at my request by political scientist Michael McDonald, who heads the United States Elections Project and studies voting patterns, underscores once again the perils this holds for the GOP.”

Find the full article and an interactive chart here.

Great Read on Global Health and Development

Along with our political and corporate work, we've worked in the non-profit sector with a particular focus on East Africa. This piece from Bill and Melinda Gates is an important read and addresses three of the myths that so often stand in the way of progress before an effort even begins. 

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McKinsey: Applying advanced analytics in consumer companies

One of the reasons we love McKinsey articles is their insistence on learning to inform and guide decisions moving forward. In political campaigns, the finite timeline demands this kind of thinking. Our corporate and advocacy work is often more open-ended, so we work hard to get organizations to adopt this same kind of thinking, even if there isn't an end date to their program. The point for every organization is that they need to be learning in real-time and making constant course corrections to improve their tactics--for immediate improvement and for long-term learning. 

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Find the McKinsey article here

Direct mail response rates beat digital

Direct Marketing News analyzed billions of emails and digital ad impressions, and compared the response rates to different types of direct mail. Their conclusion: Mail garners vastly better response rates. 


Our view: Each tactic reaches different audiences at different times and they should be used in concert to build an integrated campaign. Mobile campaigns, digital campaigns, mail campaigns, media campaigns--none of these should exist independently. Instead, managers should put themselves in the shoes of each target segment, and think through that individual's experience, working backward from Election Day. Is the message unified across media? Does it carry over from one medium to the next? Do the different tactics enhance each other and work together to build a narrative? Does the timing of each interaction generate the biggest impact? These are the questions campaigns should always be asking as they balance and coordinate their communications in paid and earned media. 

Take a look at the full article on response rates here