Scottish independence: Grassroots methods keep keen supporters in the loop
Blue State Digital, which will mastermind the campaign’s digital work, is a new media firm which played a pivotal role in the success of Barack Obama in the 2008 US presidential elections.
At the time, it was seen as a new way of conducting political campaigns with more than $200 million raised online by the Obama campaign, while barackobama.com’s social network boasted 850,000 users who organised 50,000 campaign events.
This was done chiefly through MyBO, the social networking dimension of Mr Obama’s website. This allowed his supporters to communicate directly with each other, organise their own events, and swap ideas. Obama campaign staff monitored the exchanges as a way to help them make their own links with supporters as timely and personal as possible.
Blue State was founded in 2004 by four former members of Howard Dean’s presidential campaign.
Its aim was to mobilise grassroots support for progressive candidates, causes, or products, with the aim of trying to make ordinary voters feel part of the process again.
The firm has also operated across a wide range of clients including AT&T and the financier George Soros.
Most recently, French president François Hollande is believed to have consulted the firm in the build to his victory over Nicolas Sarkozy in the French election.
The UK political director of Blue State Digital is Gregor Poynton, who was organiser of the Scottish Labour Party in the two years leading up to the party’s defeat by the SNP in 2007.
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