I am an experienced and effective online advocate, having successfully designed and promoted dozens of events, organizations, and causes. My years as a professional writer and my knowledge of the new media ecosystem and online campaign tools combine to make my efforts highly effective, and I have been able to design specialized campaigns for non-profits, businesses, political organizations, labor, and faith-based organizations.
My writing experience includes websites, mail pieces, targeted email campaigns, and blogposts; I have designed websites, written petitions, shot and edited video, (including viral video and a couple of political sock-puppet shows), and op-eds and letters to editor on national, state, and local issues. In all of my campaigns, I take care to use as many tools as are effective and appropriate for the campaign’s goals and target audience.
My online writing and advocacy works because I know how the media works.
Online campaign for the Media and Democracy Coalition: during the 2008 initial FCC hearing on net neutrality, a letter started circulating Congress showing waning support for freedom of speech on the Internet. Alerting the netroots community to a development in one of their strongest policy areas, I reposted a Free Press notice at 4 p.m. on a Friday MST asking about the policy stance of Rep. Jared Polis. There were over one hundred comments within a few hours (including the Congressman himself) and he is now an outspoken supporter of Internet freedom.
Anne Dicker for State Representative: In a grassroots Democratic primary campaign for a candidate with very little
money or name recognition, earned media and online writing were one of the only ways to get the message out. Telling a story about corruption, casinos, and ward politics through PR, blogs, and direct mail made Anne a star in local politics and sparked the beginning of a multi-year campaign against casinos along the Delaware River.
Anne Dicker is FBI Free – Corruption press release
Election Day door hanger
Penn Action’s 2010 GOTV Campaign: In my work for US Action’s PA affiliate Penn Action, I used email to recruit volunteers statewide in to make Get Out the Vote (GOTV) phonecalls. Almost all of the the volunteers were recruited and by email alone, and made calls from their homes to targeted lists of infrequent voters and environmental activists in areas affected by natural gas drilling.
In nine days, we set up six phonebanks, including one multi-organization phonebank night with the Pennsylvania State Voices roundtable. Between Facebook, Twitter, and a series of 11 emails sent out to segmented parts of a statewide list, we recruited 86 volunteers and made 2,337 phone contacts, with over 7,000 numbers attempted, in nine days and including Election Day itself.
I also sent out dozens of email blasts targeted to Philadelphia groups and personal network. Our email program contained links to partner organization, clickable online signup forms that fed into email inboxes, graphics, and in one case a YouTube video of one of the candidates, who was filmed at an election event stating he wanted Philadelphians not to show up to vote.
Sample Email Blast: “Keep Them Down”
Press, blogging, campaign design, Vern Anastasio for City Council campaign, 2007