In the 2012 election cycle, Front Porch Strategies is partnering with over 30 federal-level candidates across the country. One of them is Joe Kyrillos, a veteran New Jersey state senator now running for one of his state’s seats in the United States Senate. Kyrillos had used TeleForum technology a number of times to dialogue with voters in his state senate district. Now, facing a well-funded incumbent in a strongly Democrat-leaning state in his U.S. Senate race, Kyrillos is using TeleForums provided by Front Porch Strategies to raise his name recognition, connect with his base, and reach out to undecided voters. Kyrillos recognizes the advantage that TeleForum provides him in allowing him to personally communicate with large numbers of voters quickly and easily. “Wherever I go,” he observes, “I’m not going to find a room where I can talk to 2000 people at once.”
Seated in front of a laptop at a folding table in his campaign headquarters one recent evening, Kyrillos hosted a TeleForum targeting 67,000 Republican and unaffiliated voters in Bergen County, the most populous in the state. The event enjoyed outstanding participation; over 10,000 of those who received automated calls inviting them to the TeleForum choosing to connect to the event. Post-event statistics showed that approximately 2000 people were on the call listening in at any given time during the TeleForum.
The Kyrillos TeleForum lasted just over an hour. In that time, Kyrillos was able to converse with participants about a wide variety of important issues. The discussion ranged from United States foreign policy in the Middle East to more close-to-home concerns, such as New Jersey’s struggling economy and the most effective way to reform Medicare and Social Security.
Besides giving Kyrillos a platform to listen to the concerns of voters and share his ideas in key policy areas, the TeleForum allowed the Kyrillos campaign to gather important data for use later in the race. Instant polls, where TeleForum participants were asked to vote using the keypad of their touch-tone phones, allowed the campaign team to identify those who planned to vote for Kyrillos, those still undecided, and which supporters might be interested in casting their ballots early by mail.
By giving them the ability to efficiently reach vast numbers of voters, personally talk to voters about the issues of the race, and collect critical voter ID data for use in the ground game phase of the campaign, Front Porch Strategy’s TeleForums are giving candidates like Joe Kyrillos a powerful tool to compete in tough races across the country.
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