How to Win an Election

Written by: Dan Wheeler

“Raise more money than your opponents.”

Sadly, this strategy more often than not, leads to success in politics. It also corrupts our political system and leaves us far short of our desire to have “a government of the people, by the people, and for the people.”

Once the money has been raised (and all the promises made), how is that money being spent by those running for office? I didn’t have to spend a lot of time using Google to confirm my suspicion that the biggest expenditures are for “media buys,” somewhere between 55-75% depending upon the year and the political office being sought.

Political campaigns are a huge source of revenue for the major networks and their local affiliates. It’s billions of dollars, and the related expenses are negligible. It has to be the most profitable segment of their business. Recognizing this, I wouldn’t expect to see much effort from the Media to advocate any changes.

But change is coming for the following reasons:

  • Social Media is a powerful tool, which can be used to reach voters. Television ads may still be effective with older voters but the end is near.
  • The cost of using Social Media is negligible. Those running for office will not have to sell their soul to the highest bidder to get their name and message “out there.” “Big money” will no longer be writing the script. That should be appealing to every voter.
  • Every day we see how technology and Social Media is changing the way we live, how services and products are delivered to consumers, and how we interact with others. In my next post I will discuss the coming revolutions in our political system that may bring us closer to the democracy our Founding Fathers envisioned.