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Tuesday, 22 January 2008

London Mayoral race online: postscript


Ian Douglas at the Telegraph has had a look at the online presence of the London Mayoral candidates and has a similar conclusion to mine [Web oiling US campaign, not so much in London]: Boris is winning.

Ian points me at a Ken supporter website, which is dire, possibly worse than useless as it's not responding at all to the smears.

Brian Paddick has a website too. Plus Facebook/Twitter but they're unused - which, again, is worse than useless because an untended web presence provokes a general feeling of neglect. All the US campaigns learnt that lesson very quickly.

Brian does have more 'standard' web campaign components than Boris though, including SMS, which is pretty sophisticated (Obama only started that a few months ago). Like this banner:

Advert for Brian Paddick website

Plus the LibDems do have an organised and networked presence online and have had for a while. Experience helps and may help Brian but I would expect the Tories to copy him.

Douglas loves Barack Obama's website. Actually, you could now look at all the Democrat candidate sites and many Republican's and say similar things. A year ago some were leading but everyone's caught up - so there's precious little first mover advantage. However for both Obama (youth) and Ron Paul (Libertarians) their natural supporters are web-savvy anyway. So there is an advantage for them in being able to use the web to organise/fundraise their base where it was much harder before.

The problem for Ken is that he's a bit like Guiliani in his approach to online. It's very obvious that it's not a serious factor in his campaign. As time wears on, this will become more and more obvious - and cost him votes.

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