6.16.2003

THE "MOM TEST"

Having been involved in campaigns good and bad, I’ve developed a very scientific way of gauging the effectiveness of a Campaign’s communications efforts, of gauging whether the message is penetrating, to gauge if our efforts are paying off. It’s a rather cheap method too. Rather than expensive polls, or length meetings with seasoned campaign veterans, I instead just spend a little time on the phone with my mom.

You see, with the absurd amount of time I spend with my head in the political sand, I have gauze over my eyes. I don’t, and can’t, see the papers from the perspective of the average voter. My mom is the average voter.

During the Simon campaign, as I was pouring my blood, sweat, and tears into the race, she paid attention to anything that crossed the multiple papers she receives daily. And despite her attentiveness, coming to the close of the election she commented, “you know what, I read the papers every day, and yet I still don’t know what he stands for.”

After first blowing that off as, “oh she just isn’t looking hard enough,” it hit me! NO! She’s right. If we’re not getting the message of what Bill Simon stands for and who Bill Simon is to my mom, we’re failing. Period. End of story.

Since then, I’ve paid extra attention to what she’s had to say. I may know all the particulars of how the mud being thrown at Darrell Issa is false, but she doesn’t. And so, when she starts to tell me that, “he doesn’t seem like a very good guy,” I get worried.

Let’s just hope Issa doesn’t have the same communications problems Simon did.

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