Again, I was wrong.
Digital marketing has made absolutely no difference to this General Election.
Today we all saw and, more to the point, heard what Gordon Brown thinks of the electorate. What’s wrong about a 65-year-old voter, Gillian Duffy in Rochdale, asking him about the economy and immigration? Brown wanted adulation and acclamation. But Mrs Duffy inconveniently asked him awkward questions in front of the media.
The result of leaving switched on his radio mike is that we all heard what he is really like. We knew he’s a bully in Downing Street, but he said to Mrs Duffy that he wants to help people, and then, in what he thought was the privacy of his limousine, slagged off this Labour supporter and activist who is now probably going to vote Lib Dem. And who can blame her?
Again, this is nothing to do with digital.
Mass media, especially radio this time, has the content to grip everyone’s attention, – everyone includes the news services, – Mrs Duffy, the benighted Sarah Brown, Nick Clegg, David Cameron, anybody thinking about watching tomorrow’s final debate, the electorate, behavioural psychologists, the removal company Brown will need after the Election, and the men who make straitjackets for inmates of padded cells.
This will be seen as Brown’s equivalent of Neil Kinnock’s moment of madness in Sheffield.
There should be no surprises here. We all knew, deep down, that Gordon Brown is not someone we’d like to accompany us for a genial drink in the pub on a Friday night.
But, for me, the underlying surprise remains this: why has digital marketing been of so little importance in this campaign?
The answer is that traditional media has the content, digital does not.
Twitter simply cannot carry the big stories. And why boot up your laptop when you can just turn on the TV or radio?
Today has been a big one. My next post will try its best to compete, but it will be about Micky Denehy’s first attempt to put together a halfway decent blog for The EACA School on WordPress. Yes, I know: hardly knicker-gripping, but I’ll do my best. I’ll also tell you a good Neil Kinnock story about Gordon Brown.
In the meantime, remember what SuperMac, Harold MacMillan, had to say about politics. When asked what drives politics, he said, “Events, dear boy. Events.”
Today, there has been a significant Event.