The Republican National Committee (RNC) will launch a new Voter Challenge Facebook app intended to increase voter turnout by applying a little social media peer pressure, according to Politico.
The app will go beyond simply "liking" and candidate or Republican group, but will ask people to commit to voting Republican in November and ask them to challenge three friends to do likewise.
The party also aims to direct its messaging to individual voters with phone calls, face-to-face engagement to continuously remind people of early voting opportunities.
The new Facebook app is one component of the party's strategy to embrace and engage voters using social media and digital technology.
Over the years Republicans had built a comprehensive voter file, but it was largely inaccessible to campaigns and Republican operatives. Opening the vault of information was the primary duty of Azarias Reda, who told the Wall Street Journal
recently that "it does nothing to have a big database with information just sitting there."
For a party whose base voters tend to be older, Reda is not dissuaded from embracing new technologies.
"If you can reach someone on Twitter, reach someone on Facebook—great. The only thing that really matters is that you reach them," he says adding that "the best contact is a personal one."
This year, the paper reports, the RNC dedicated the last year to designing "a common interface" that will enable campaign staff, outside groups and volunteers on the ground to design individual apps to utilize the RNC voter information.
RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said the embrace of digital technology and new apps have helped the GOP broaden its voter base heading into November.
“Our focus is on offering our candidates the on-the-ground support they need to engage with their communities and to get out the vote. We’re supporting the work of nearly 1,500 people in the field. By making early investments, we’ve been able to supply our candidates with superior data and new voter contact apps and tools, and we’ve been able to expand the map so that we have multiple paths to taking back the Senate," said the chairman last week announcing the RNC had raised a record
$10.1 million in August.
Both parties this election cycle are employing more targeted advertising, known as "addressable advertising," reports the Washington Post.
"Audience-based decision making is the future of running a campaign," said Zac Moffatt, digital director of the Romney 2012 campaign. "It has to be. Not embracing technology is embracing inefficiency."
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