WASHINGTON--President Barack Obama's re-election campaign is data driven, and constantly coming up with new and creative ways to harvest current e-mails and test what makes people respond to an on-line appeal, with the latest a NCAA bracket challenge.
Hoopster Obama fills out his brackets each year and now his campaign is leveraging the 2012 NCAA basketball play-off season to reach out to an audience that may not be otherwise engaged in following a political campaign.
The bracket challenge, released Sunday night for male teams (women later) follows another test the Obama campaign ran last week, an e-mail from deputy campaign manager Julianna Smoot offering free Obama/Biden bumper stickers in the mail "Just one catch," Smoot says in her e-mail, "...put it up somewhere people will see it."
The bumper sticker and the NCAA brackets challenge test:
*if the email address is current.
*if the email was opened.
*if the email drew a response.
*lets the campaign compare response rates from various emails to the same person to determine, as the campaign season goes on, what specific pitches may work the best.
The NCAA challenge goes like this:
"Fill out your bracket below and see if you can beat President Obama's bracket predictions.
"It's college basketball time again -- and as friends and co-workers gather around the water cooler to talk top seeds and Cinderellas, here's your chance to fill out a bracket with the President himself.
"And how's this for bragging rights: we'll publish a list of everyone who does better than the President here on BarackObama.com after the tournament is over."