Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Welcome to the 2008 Politics Online Conference

8:44 a.m.
Opening breakfast. Bottom lobby of the Renaissance D.C. Hotel. Here we are, a room full of politically minded people, techno-professionals, old media, and people like me, the bloggers. I'm sitting with Tony Winders, Director of Marketing for ValuClick Media, online advertising mega giant, discussing the white papers," a unified description of "best practices" online. This is a project that interests me greatly. Someone has to tame the wild west of the Internet.

Richard Kosinski is giving the breakfast introduction, discussing online advertising campaigns, target marketing, and other connection techniques for websites. In case you weren't aware, advertising conglomerates have ways to check IPs, the interests of readers, demographics, and other identifying information about who surfs in and out. I believe this will become critical to future campaigns.

Important point of interest: No uninitiated sound on advertisements unless the site is for people surfing in for entertainment. Duly noted. Web sites that blast sound upon entry are quickly shut down. Why? Surfers are turned off. So, word to the wise. If you're not running a movie, don't have an automatically loaded song on your website.

Beginning with Howard Dean, political campaigns have become bigger users of online media. The people here thinks that might be changing the way candidates campaign. I'm inclined to agree. This year's election kicked-off with a January 3rd online campaign. Richard's presentation consists of the various campaigns.

"Tell Us the Real State of the Union"

"Hillary has a real Health Care Plan"

These are just a few of the online campaigns waged on behalf of candidates and advocacy groups.

But getting back to Tony. Nice guy from Agora Hills, California. He's been with ValuClick for about five years. I'm trying to find out what makes him tick, but it's a little difficult in the middle of Richard's presentation.

Maybe we'll catch up at the cocktail party.