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ZOMBIE ONLINE POLITICS:
                          Killing some online myths.


                                      Steve Olson
                                  Senior Strategist
                                  Trilogy Interactive
                                     @SteveOlson


                                 TRIL            GY
Friday, November 30, 12
HOUSEKEEPING




                                    TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Goals

       • Knit together folks who are interested in talking about
        -- and sharing -- data regarding online organizing.

       • Present some data to help ground what we do in some
        form of reality.

       •Discuss your myth-busting data

       • Gather ideas for future research -- and sharing of
        results


                                             TRIL             GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Ground Rules

       • Apologies in advance for the language. I only curse
        because I care about you.

       • Feel free to interrupt.

       • Email: OnlineZombieMyths@Gmail.com

       • #Roots12 #ZombieRoots

       • Your mileage may vary



                                             TRIL          GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Agenda

       • Zombie Politics Defined

       • Online Zombie Myths

       • Discussion: Next Research Steps

       • Discussion: Building a Learning Infrastructure




                                            TRIL          GY
Friday, November 30, 12
WHO THE HELL ARE YOU?




                                         TRIL     GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Steve Olson (@SteveOlson)

       • First Website: 1994 (first for pay: 1998)

       • Field Organizer 2000

       • 2002-2003 NYU Political Campaign Management
        Graduate School

       • DCCC Online Operations (2003-2005)

       • Planned Parenthood Fed. of Am. (2005-2007)

       •Udall for Us All (2008)
                                              TRIL     GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Trilogy Interactive (2012)




                                    TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
ZOMBIE ONLINE POLITICS




                                         TRIL      GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Zombie Online Politics: A Short History




                           TheMonkeyCage.org
                                          TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The First




                          Email is dead.



                                     TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The First




                          TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second




                          Candidates who “win” on
                           Facebook win the race.


                                         TRIL       GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second

       • Background: We were grumpy with all the “X is beating
         Y on Facebook” articles in 2010
       • The Hypothesis: If organizing on Facebook was an
         indicator of the strength of the campaign as a whole, the
         “Like share” should predict the share of the vote.
       • The Hedging: This was 2010 data, Facebook’s users are
         far more representative of the voting population now.
         Additionally, we only had likes in 2010 -- no “talking
         about this” or easy engagement metrics.

                                               TRIL           GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second


                                            FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome
                                                        0.6


                                                        0.5


                                                        0.4
                             Win Margin




                                                        0.3
                                                                                                             Win Margin
                                                                                                             Predicted Win Margin
                                                        0.2


                                                        0.1


                                                         0
                                    -1          -0.5          0          0.5           1             1.5
                                                              FB FAN Margin


                          Figure 1: U.S. Senate races



                                                                                                           TRIL                        GY
                          But for gubernatorial races, Figure 2, we see only a very weak correlation, as represented by the red line
                          sloping only slightly up as you move from left to right. The strength of the campaign's Facebook
                          presence would only explain about 0.008 of the vote margin, according to these calculations.


Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second


                                           FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome
                                                             0.6

                                                             0.5

                                                             0.4
                             Win Margin




                                                             0.3
                                                                                                           Win Margin
                                                             0.2                                           Predicted Win Margin

                                                             0.1

                                                               0
                                    -1             -0.5            0              0.5               1
                                                           FB FAN Margin


                          Figure 2: Gubernatorial Races

                          For our sample of U.S. House races, we observed a slight negative correlation, meaning a stronger

                                                                                                     TRIL
                          Facebook presence was associated with a smaller margin of victory. Figure 3 shows predicted win
                          margin decreasing as you move from left to right.                                                       GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second


                                           FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome
                                                                0.5

                                                               0.45

                                                                0.4

                                                               0.35

                                                                0.3
                             Win Margin




                                                               0.25
                                                                                                            Win Margin
                                                                0.2
                                                                                                            Predicted Win Margin
                                                               0.15

                                                                0.1

                                                               0.05

                                                                 0
                                 -1.5        -1        -0.5           0       0.5        1         1.5
                                                              FB Fan Margin


                          Figure 3: U.S. House Races

                          One thing all three graphs have in common is the wide scattering of the win margin plots. All three sets

                                                                                                         TRIL
                          of data produced large standard deviations, which hints at the wide variety of factors in play in this
                          election.                                                                                                  GY
                          SUMMARY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second

       • Results: Slightly correlated for US Senate (13% of
         result); no correlation for gubernatorial, slightly negative
         (!) for House races.




                                                TRIL           GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Second (2012!)




                                  TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
SLOTH!!!!




                          TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Third




          You Shouldn’t Ask for Money on
                 Social Networks
                          (h/t @HNachem)



                                           TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Third

       • Background: Statewide Ballot Initiative -- unusually
         large & active Facebook fan base
       • The issue: Very active posting (3-5x per day; strong
         responsiveness, high quality posts), but reluctant to ask
         heavily. Preferred to “build the narrative”. Implicitly
         relying on passive fundraising via donation link on the
         page.




                                               TRIL             GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Third

         Passive           Active
       • 100 gifts        • 40 asks
       • $6,186.28        • 1,064 gifts
       • $61.86 average   • $73,317.50
                          • $68.91 average




                                      TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Third




                          $84,021.78 raised in six
                           months on Facebook.


                                          TRIL       GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Third (kicker)




                   $1,848,635.94 raised online
                      4.54% from Facebook


                                     TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fourth




                  You Shouldn’t Ask People to
                         Retweet You


                                    TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fourth




                          TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fourth




                          source: DanZarrella.com / Hubspot.com




                                                              TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fourth




                            source: DanZarrella.com
                                 Hubspot.com



                          TRIL             GY
Friday, November 30, 12
BABY OTTER PILE!




                          TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fifth




            Email the list this video: We’re
                going to raise a ton!


                                 TRIL    GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Myth: The Fifth

         The Test: Does placing a lightbox callout AFTER a video
         raise more money than placing a video on a donation
         page?

                          • CONTROL         • TEST
                          • Sent: 44,683    • Sent: 44,875
                          • Donations: 23   • Donations: 69
                          • Total Raised:   • Total Raised:
                           $900 ($39.13      $2,346
                           avg)



                                                   TRIL       GY
Friday, November 30, 12
LET’S DO THIS.




                                      TRIL   GY
Friday, November 30, 12
Stay in touch



                          solson@trilogyinteractive.com
                                  @SteveOlson
                           facebook.com/stevenkolson




                                               TRIL       GY
Friday, November 30, 12

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Killing Zombie Online Campaign Myths -- With Data

  • 1. ZOMBIE ONLINE POLITICS: Killing some online myths. Steve Olson Senior Strategist Trilogy Interactive @SteveOlson TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 2. HOUSEKEEPING TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 3. Goals • Knit together folks who are interested in talking about -- and sharing -- data regarding online organizing. • Present some data to help ground what we do in some form of reality. •Discuss your myth-busting data • Gather ideas for future research -- and sharing of results TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 4. Ground Rules • Apologies in advance for the language. I only curse because I care about you. • Feel free to interrupt. • Email: OnlineZombieMyths@Gmail.com • #Roots12 #ZombieRoots • Your mileage may vary TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 5. Agenda • Zombie Politics Defined • Online Zombie Myths • Discussion: Next Research Steps • Discussion: Building a Learning Infrastructure TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 6. WHO THE HELL ARE YOU? TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 7. Steve Olson (@SteveOlson) • First Website: 1994 (first for pay: 1998) • Field Organizer 2000 • 2002-2003 NYU Political Campaign Management Graduate School • DCCC Online Operations (2003-2005) • Planned Parenthood Fed. of Am. (2005-2007) •Udall for Us All (2008) TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 8. Trilogy Interactive (2012) TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 9. ZOMBIE ONLINE POLITICS TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 10. Zombie Online Politics: A Short History TheMonkeyCage.org TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 11. Myth: The First Email is dead. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 12. Myth: The First TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 13. Myth: The Second Candidates who “win” on Facebook win the race. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 14. Myth: The Second • Background: We were grumpy with all the “X is beating Y on Facebook” articles in 2010 • The Hypothesis: If organizing on Facebook was an indicator of the strength of the campaign as a whole, the “Like share” should predict the share of the vote. • The Hedging: This was 2010 data, Facebook’s users are far more representative of the voting population now. Additionally, we only had likes in 2010 -- no “talking about this” or easy engagement metrics. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 15. Myth: The Second FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome 0.6 0.5 0.4 Win Margin 0.3 Win Margin Predicted Win Margin 0.2 0.1 0 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 FB FAN Margin Figure 1: U.S. Senate races TRIL GY But for gubernatorial races, Figure 2, we see only a very weak correlation, as represented by the red line sloping only slightly up as you move from left to right. The strength of the campaign's Facebook presence would only explain about 0.008 of the vote margin, according to these calculations. Friday, November 30, 12
  • 16. Myth: The Second FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome 0.6 0.5 0.4 Win Margin 0.3 Win Margin 0.2 Predicted Win Margin 0.1 0 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 1 FB FAN Margin Figure 2: Gubernatorial Races For our sample of U.S. House races, we observed a slight negative correlation, meaning a stronger TRIL Facebook presence was associated with a smaller margin of victory. Figure 3 shows predicted win margin decreasing as you move from left to right. GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 17. Myth: The Second FB-predicted outcome vs. actual outcome 0.5 0.45 0.4 0.35 0.3 Win Margin 0.25 Win Margin 0.2 Predicted Win Margin 0.15 0.1 0.05 0 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 FB Fan Margin Figure 3: U.S. House Races One thing all three graphs have in common is the wide scattering of the win margin plots. All three sets TRIL of data produced large standard deviations, which hints at the wide variety of factors in play in this election. GY SUMMARY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 18. Myth: The Second • Results: Slightly correlated for US Senate (13% of result); no correlation for gubernatorial, slightly negative (!) for House races. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 19. Myth: The Second (2012!) TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 20. SLOTH!!!! TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 21. Myth: The Third You Shouldn’t Ask for Money on Social Networks (h/t @HNachem) TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 22. Myth: The Third • Background: Statewide Ballot Initiative -- unusually large & active Facebook fan base • The issue: Very active posting (3-5x per day; strong responsiveness, high quality posts), but reluctant to ask heavily. Preferred to “build the narrative”. Implicitly relying on passive fundraising via donation link on the page. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 23. Myth: The Third Passive Active • 100 gifts • 40 asks • $6,186.28 • 1,064 gifts • $61.86 average • $73,317.50 • $68.91 average TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 24. Myth: The Third $84,021.78 raised in six months on Facebook. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 25. Myth: The Third (kicker) $1,848,635.94 raised online 4.54% from Facebook TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 26. Myth: The Fourth You Shouldn’t Ask People to Retweet You TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 27. Myth: The Fourth TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 28. Myth: The Fourth source: DanZarrella.com / Hubspot.com TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 29. Myth: The Fourth source: DanZarrella.com Hubspot.com TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 30. BABY OTTER PILE! TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 31. Myth: The Fifth Email the list this video: We’re going to raise a ton! TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 32. Myth: The Fifth The Test: Does placing a lightbox callout AFTER a video raise more money than placing a video on a donation page? • CONTROL • TEST • Sent: 44,683 • Sent: 44,875 • Donations: 23 • Donations: 69 • Total Raised: • Total Raised: $900 ($39.13 $2,346 avg) TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 33. LET’S DO THIS. TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12
  • 34. Stay in touch solson@trilogyinteractive.com @SteveOlson facebook.com/stevenkolson TRIL GY Friday, November 30, 12