Obama’s Social Network – Hillary vs Obama Sign Up Screen Design

It’s clear that both candidates have been advised that “social media” is going to be very important, with their various web based videos, their blogs. Even Hillary’s tagline “let the conversation begin” seems to have come from some breathless political strategists mind as they heard that “blogs were conversations”, but has obviously never written a blog before. Additionally Hillary’s blog has no entries in it, just an invitation to sign up and write a “blog post” for them, weird, i’m sure people want to hear what they think, surely they’ll get plenty of “man on the street” feedback from the comments.

Hillary let the Conversatio

Interestingly Barak Obama’s latest web based feature is my.barackobama.com which is essentially a social network for Barak Obama supporters. An interesting strategy, rather than using existing technologies like Howard Dean did, like friendster and meetup, Barak’s camp has decided to build their own (although no one knows who they hired at this point). It’s certainly not new to have constituents sign up to get access to tools for fundraising and organizing but this is the closest i’ve seen to a candidate branded social network.

My Obama 08
click for full size

As I was browsing both Hillary’s site and Obama’s I found an enormous contrast between the sign up screens that was worth noting. Obama’s sign up screen provides a really good overview of what your going to get once you sign up. Hillary’s on the other hand seems to be more about what you’re going to do for her. Another interesting contrast is Obama’s asks for a lot less information, he doesn’t need your mailing address, just your zip code, and by providing that your immediately presented groups and events in your area. Asking people for information in a sign up form is always a negotiation and in this case it seems Obama’s sign up screen is superior in communicating what your going to get and only asking for what they need. Hillary’s on the other hand is ambiguous about what your going to get and is really asking for information they want to help them market to you better, as opposed to what they need to serve you better.

Hillary Sign up Screen
click for full size

In the end people are not going to switch loyalties based on sign up screens, but conversion rates matter. How many more of his supporters is Obama going to sign up and get engaged in the process? Political campaigns have always been a co-creative activity where they rely on the passion and activity of their supporters, but the internet, web2.0, and social media are amplifying the impact that those supporters can have, and the better the candidates “employ” those supporters the better.

Elsewhere:
Mashable on Obama’s MySpace ambitions
ZDnet – Is Obama’s social network anti-social?
Steve O’Hear at ZDnet
AVC says That’s Not How You Do It Obama

hat tip – Fimoculous

UPDATE: Looks like Blue State Digital is the company behind Obama’s Social Network

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2 Comments

  1. Posted February 11, 2007 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    That’s a really interesting viewpoint. The first time I’ll be able to vote is 2008, and I’m gunning for Obama so far, but that’s really cool how an interface can reflect a campaign. Nice analysis :D

  2. Posted March 5, 2007 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    My Momma, My Momma. Who is no longer on this earth. Told me in a dream a while back. Before I ever even heard the name. Barack Obama, Barack Obama. It wasn’t until then that I started to read about him. I believe that he is the one that will get our country back.

2 Trackbacks

  • [...] There is a LOT of stuff out there about Obama. BuzzMetrics should launch a Obamameter. Naw, that’s too mundane. How about an Obamaramameter? Now let me say that I like the guy. But talk about peaking too early. This candidate is begging for a flame out. Can you say “Howard Dean”? And if that happens, according to Todd Zeigler at the Bivings Report, Obama will likely blame it on you. Why? Because his campaign is all about “you.” Yes, that’s right, “you.” Not Obama. It is you. Are you a loser? Winner? Well, whatever you are it is the campaign and by extension it is all your fault. Obama’s getting a bit personal, no? He’s not befriending the media according to Politico. In his post-campaign inaugural interview Obama started lecturing the media about calling him a ‘lightweight’. Bad move. Makes Obama look like … a lightweight! (And I like the guy!!!). Then there’s an interesting comparison of Clinton and Obama’s online organizing strategy in Experience Curve. Could this be a sign of the future? Will today’s online strategies be as critiqued and reviewed as closely as traditional advertising was in the past? I say yes. [...]

  • [...] Obama’s Social Networks – Hillary vs Obama Signup Screen Design [Experience Strategy] [...]

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