Annie Moore spent the 2022 Election cycle as Digital Director for the Republican State Leadership Committee. In this interview, she shares insights about the struggles down ballot campaigns faced with online fundraising and emphasizes the importance of relationships and communication.
What’s an opportunity in digital campaigning you wished you could have taken advantage of more this cycle?
I wish we could’ve helped to create and then activate our own micro influencers in swing districts to help with both messaging and fundraising.
What prior belief about campaigning did you have to update during the 2022 cycle?
Anyone can raise money online. This cycle I learned that when times are tough for Americans, they’re tough for candidates and organizations trying to raise money to fund their campaigns as well. You have to have the right message on the right channels at the right time to raise money and unfortunately not just anyone can make all those stars align.
I wish I had realized just how bad it was going to get for online fundraisers and adjusted my budget accordingly.
What’s a mistake you saw other campaigners make last cycle and how would you fix it?
Stop building programs on hope. You must have a base return on your ad spend that you know you’ll be able to profit on. I’ve crunched the numbers and done the math, too. If we spend $X to reach people and they convert at Y% with an average donation of $Z… it’s all fairy dust and magic.
Republicans haven’t been doing digital long enough to have concrete historical numbers to be able to make projections that are as accurate as we need them to be when we’re spending tens of millions of dollars (if not more). For anyone trying to raise money online in the future, I’d recommend a base return that you expect on your sends after a certain period of time or you’ll continue to throw money down the drain.
What’s a problem you encountered last cycle that you wish there was a solution to?
The cannibalization of donor files and the copy paste formula for raising money. Everyone’s content looks the same and we’re all sending to the same lists. Of course people got burnt out. For the GOP to move forward in their attempt to match Democrats’ online fundraising prowess, we need to be able to message to new donors in creative ways.
2022 was the __ Election. How do you fill in the blank and why?
It wasn’t the year it should’ve been for Republicans. I don’t think there’s any one reason in particular that you can point to, but instead a whole host of reasons why the GOP didn’t perform well in a political environment that was originally tee’d up for them to make massive gains across the board.
What software or apps were indispensable to you last cycle?
Slack and Zoom – communication, communication, communication.
In 2024, what will be critical for digital campaigning?
Creativity and personalization.