Perfecting your “ground game” in marketing- learning from US Elections

the US Presidential elections arrive tomorrow (finally) political
pundits are unwilling to say which candidate will win as the polls of likely
voters are so close. Nevertheless, it does seem that both Democrats and
Republicans are going all out tomorrow for what is called the "ground game" or
"get out the vote" effort. Whatever way the US Presidential election
goes the "ground game” on election day will continue to be talked about
and should give some great clues to marketers. But after all what is the "ground
game" in politics and elections? 

"ground game" is the effort of political parties to get voters out to
actually vote on Election Day. Candidates generally exhort everyone to vote in
a sort of "create the market" strategy in their campaign speeches.
However, the door knocking on days immediately before the election or on
election day is like getting the sales force to call on both loyalists as well
as those that might lean your way after a billion dollar Ad campaign
that have bombarded the electorate with differing messages. 

are some take-a-ways for marketers from the unfolding ground game of the
US Elections:

  • TV Ads can create only
    awareness and hopefully positive feelings about your brand – they cannot
    persuade the customer to buy (the act of voting in elections)
  • Unforeseen natural events like
    Hurricane Sandy can demotivate voters who are in the affected areas even
    when they had  every intention to vote and would have done so if
    there was no disruption of life due to the hurricane
  • Coupled with TV think of more
    central routes to persuading
    un-committed voters before the voting
  • Although in marketing you do
    not have only one day of reckoning (Election Day) there are promotions
    that can last for only a few days. These include Groupon and Living Social
    type of promotions that are priced to close in a few days. Since you
    have calculated your margins, volumes and customer acquisition costs when
    you run a promotion, get your ground game in order
  • Ground game in marketing can be
    door-to-door only when you have a large value product or some kind of a
    recurring sale (like an electricity supplier or cell phone company) for
    ground games involve sales folks that tend to be very expensive.
    Augmenting the ground game sales force with digital marketing that offers
    a short term immediate benefit like a coupon or discount can work for
    certain segments of your customers

on ground games and marketing lessons as the US Presidential elections play out
tomorrow. Contact StratoServe.


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