First fruits of the CampaignTech conference: according to Benny Johnson from BuzzFeed, who spoke on a panel this morning and who covered the digital video side of campaign 2012, Obama 2012’s YouTube channel recorded 300 MILLION individual video views, to Mitt Romney’s 30 million. A ten-fold difference! What immediately comes to mind is the earlier comparison between Obama and Romney’s online ad spending…in which Obama again blew Romney out of the water.
Just as in 2008, when the campaign saw over a billion minutes of video viewing, Obama’s staff also posted a slew of individual video clips, often several per day, and often designed to deliver a targeted message to a specific audience of voters…or campaign volunteers.
While on-stage, Benny predicted a decline in campaign videos, because he saw the viral-wannabe video idea as becoming played-out in the political space. He may be right when talking about videos designed to break out and get a wide viewership, but that’s not the only way sophisticated campaigns USE video. Smart candidates and organizers do what Obama did and what many other advocacy and electoral campaigns are doing right now: create videos that are designed for a specific and concrete purpose, whether it’s to motivate a donor, train a volunteer, or deliver a message aimed at a niche audience. Campaign video ain’t going away anytime soon…at least, I sure as hell don’t see it happening.