This just in from the newly-announced Republican candidate for Louisiana’s 3rd Congressional seat (soon to be abandoned by Charlie Melancon), who clearly feels that a robust online presence is a selling point:
[Jeff] Landry launched his website for his race today in concert with his announcement. The site, which is available at www.LandryForLouisiana.com, uses all of the modern tools of communication, allowing voters to follow him via a Twitter feed, to choose the issues of concern to them through a Take Action page and links to Landry’s Facebook site. Despite just announcing his candidacy, Landry has already amassed almost 1,000 Facebook group followers. Landry’s video announcement is an extension of his online efforts.
I got Landry’s press release via email from someone on his staff, who very helpfully bolded the paragraph above in his message — good targeting, guys. In the wake of Campaign Obama 2008 it’s not surprising that a candidate would tout his internet-savviness, much in the same way that campaigns are careful to promote good fundraising numbers, but it’s still fascinating to watch the online world slip its tentacles more and more deeply into the political culture.
One other bit of fun: if you go to the front page of Landry’s site, watch his little video self “break the plane” and appear to walk out of the page to chat with you. Michael Steele apparently appeared in a similar online video overlay to some derision, but in this case it seems to work well — it’s startling and attention-grabbing on a political site, even to someone like me who’s jaded by 15 years of popups, popunders, mouseovers and other online advertising tricks. Nice work, guys.
Update: A couple of folks have pointed out previous campaign uses of the video popover, including this one from 2006 sent in by Matt Lockshin. Also, apparently Virginia’s Mark Warner used a similar effect on a site a couple of years ago.