Friday night Gov. Warner threw a very expensive party for YearlyKos attendees. Some people wonder if it reflects poorly on his judgement, that he lavishly throws money around. I think this may have been a very effective use of marketing dollars and a very sharp strategic move. Think about it this way: if Gov. Warner has now established himself in the front of the pack, and grabbed onto a great big piece of the mindshare of the blogosphere, for only $70,000 (or whatever it cost), then GOOD FOR HIM – it shows he knows how to reach the audiences he needs to reach, when he needs to reach them. It’s called “marketing.” If there’s anything the Democrats need it’s marketing know-how, and if it means we get to eat free sushi, all the better.
Ice sculpture at Governor Warner’s party for YearlyKos attendees
Compare this to the cost and effort that would be required to achieve the same results using other means. How DO you get the attention of the blogoshpere?
Do you set up local or regional meetings with bloggers? Think of the travel costs, time and staff that would take. Then there’s the fact that he would have to fight tooth and nail with all the other candidates along that road.
With one well-timed event, Warner established mindshare – he got it done, he’s on our map.
But wait, there’s more!
I attended an event in San Francisco where unofficial Democratic Presidential candidate and former Virginia Governor Mark Warner spoke and took questions. (Here is his blog and I am assured by an astonished aide that he actually spends time on it.) The event was a fundraiser for Heath Schuler who is running for Congress in North Carolina’s 11th District against one of the typical Republican Culture of Corruption Congressmen. First, I have to say that Schuler is GOOD. He is a good speaker, and comes across very well. Here’s his blog. He’s also a former NFL quarterback. Let’s wish him well! Send him a few bucks.
It was very crowded (even so I knew about 1/4 of the people there including the guy who put it together – for various reasons I seem to end up at number of events in this circle of funding types…), but I had a chance to chat with Gov. Warner for a bit. I have to say that was very impressed. We had a good chat. I asked him if he or anyone on his staff has their brain around the conservative movement and what it is, and he had pretty good knowledge.
Then I asked him what he’s going to do when they smear him. He said they’ve already tried. So I think he might need some work on understanding what they are going to do — that they’re going to just make up really, really nasty shit and spread it everywhere before anyone can respond…