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Articles by Donald E. L. Johnson

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Today is Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Blogging


How political candidates must engage voters online

Republicans are starting to figure out how they can match the Obama campaign's online political machine, Politico reports.  As far as I could tell, the GOP had and has no online game. They're starting from zero. My thoughts:

1. Find and support bloggers and commenters who can compete with Obama's online advocates and thugs. Romney got very little online support because he despises the media, bloggers and anyone who can think.

2. Recruit social media candidates, not folks who tweet news releases and polite platitudes the way Mitt Romney did and most Congressional candidates do. 

3. Teach the congressional candidates who can write and who have the smarts to debate online to engage folks on FaceBook, twitter and the comments sections of their local papers and broadcasters.

4. Make sure that candidates write their online posts and are online whenever they aren't fundraising or meeting voters. Social media only works when there are two-way conversations and numerous respondents to candidates'  posts.

5. Exploit databases that allow them to target supporters with relevant content, messages and fundraising appeals.

6. Beef up candidates' web sites. Publish candidates' goals, positions on issues, speeches, articles, and important posts along with supporting documents, bills, laws and regs. Go for the opinion leaders who use the web site4s to identify the candidates they will support.

7. Make sure that everything written, printed, published and said by a candidate includes several hard sales pitches for relevant social media, e-mail and web pages where voters can learn more and talk to the candidates.

8. Make candidates read their Facebook and twitter threads as well as comments about them by readers of sites like Politico, Daily Caller, FreeBeacon.com, WSJ.com, WashingtonPost.com, and on their local media web sites. Connect with voters by engaging them and showing that you have the guts to take risks for them.

9. Show people who comment and blog for a candidate that they're being read and heard by responding to them online and quoting a few of them in speeches and articles. Do something to show you're not in a sound proof, windowless bubble. Get people (not paid pundits or your paid online advocates) excited about being on your team.

10. Get political communications consultants out of the way. We don't believe them nor do we want to hear from them. If a candidate can't give a decent speech, write and engage voters online, that person shouldn't be in politics and will have a hard time winning an election. Ask Mitt Romney. He could give a C speech and write a B article, but he got an F from voters because he didn't engage or communicate with them. He never showed he was learning from the campaign.

LINKS:

GOP seeks to up its online game, by Emily Schultheis

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 12/08/12 at 04:39 PM
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Facebook, Twitter, WSJ.com, Politico.com, DailyCaller.com violate your privacy

Facebook privacy continues to be a problem on WSJ.com, Politico, Daily Caller and other sites. When you recommend an article via FB, you get an opt-in request that says if you use the FB connection, you give WSJ.com or whatever site access to the names of your friends, your profile info and more. The sites sell this info to marketers and spammers.

If you click "don't allow" the connection is cancelled. I don't use the FB connection on WSJ.com because I don't trust News Corp., which owns The Wall Street Journal, Barron's and Fox News. The WSJ.com comment section also is programmed to invade your privacy and often requires a new log in even though you're logged into wsj.com. It's all very frustrating to me.

Similarly, I don't use Yahoo.com's Facebook connection.

FB and the sites that want you to recommend their articles to your FB friends say that they're not violating our privacy because our Friends and profile info are available to anyone who checks us out on FB. I believe only we should know who our FB and Twitter friends are. Our friends' names should be confidential, imho.

I haven't signed up for Google+ because it wants access to all of my info and the right to sell that info just like FB and Twitter do. 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 11/25/11 at 11:23 AM
e-commerceEthicsTrustMarketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

How the Left used blogs, Facebook and Twitter to attack Ken Buck and how he failed to respond

Ken Buck may lose the U.S. Senate election because he failed to effectively use ads, his debates with Michael Bennet, his web site, e-mails, news releases, blogs, Facebook or Twitter to fight back when the Left used those tools to gin up outrage over a date rape case that he handled professionally, if not as sensitively as he might have.

Chuck Plunkett reviews how the Left used The Colorado Independent, Coloradopols, Facebook and Twitter to spread the made up outrage. My comment on his piece is cross posted with some links below the jump:

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 10/24/10 at 03:43 PM
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Some political bloggers are paid by parties, candidates

I am not paid by anybody to blog. And I don’t accept ads, although I’ve thought about it and discarded the idea because I’m too busy being retired to start another business. Been there and done that.

But the Daily Caller reports some well known blogs take money from candidates and parties. That’s ok if the money buys ads, not blog posts like this one. It’s not ok if a blogger is a consultant to someone the consultant works for. There are a lot of ethically challenge people in politics, business and life as well as among political and nonpolitical bloggers and posters on YouTube, FaceBook and Twitter, etc. 

Readers beware.

LINK: True story of bloggers who secretly feed on partisan cash. By Jonathan Strong.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 08/24/10 at 09:35 PM
EthicsMarketing and SalesAdvertisingBloggingPermalink

How bloggers, lobbyists can cover Congress from home

Back in the 1970s and 1980s when I was editor of Modern Healthcare and had one and then two reporters working for me in our Washington bureau, I pined to be there. I wanted to dig for stories that I knew we were missing and not breaking. I couldn’t do that from our Chicago office, but now that would be possible, thanks to the Internet and increasing transparency in Congress. 

In How to cover Congress without leaving home, Kelly McBride reports on how a few left wing bloggers are using technology to get ahead of their competitors who are covering Congress on the ground. Her article is must reading for anyone who’s trying to follow important legislation for an employer, trade association or a blog.

Even with the new technology, covering Congress or a state legislature is as hard as it’s ever been. You have to read bills, testimony, letters, articles blogs and anything else, including books, that will help you understand, say ObamaCare, and cap and trade bills. This takes time, but for wonks, it can be a lot of fun, especially when you uncover nuggets that you can use to advance a story or cause or to stop a bad amendment or bill. LINK: How to cover Congress without leaving home. By Kelly McBride.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 07/31/10 at 04:21 PM
ColoradoPoliticsMarketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

Has Erick Erickson destroyed RedState’s credibility? I think so

Byron York correctly asserts that conservative blogger Erick Erickson, who is backing Colorado’s Ken Buck for the GOP’s U.S. Senate nomination, has destroyed his credibility as a blogger and pundit by making up a rumor about a GOP candidate and her accuser in South Carolina.

Erickson wrote on his RedState blog that he knew who paid a blogger to charge a Republican candidate with adultry, and then he admitted that he made up the story.

York concludes:

Why write something he knew wasn’t true? “With apologies to RedState readers,” Erickson wrote, “I’ve had no hesitation in stringing the media along like Folks has done.”  Apparently Erickson’s intent was to call attention to Folks’ nasty tactics and the likelihood that Folks is attacking Haley on behalf of some other player in the South Carolina political world. But sacrificing your own credibility in an effort to undermine someone else’s is not a good idea, and what Erickson has done has surely hurt both his own reputation and that of his website

I’ve never been an Erickson or Red State fan, and I never will be.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 05/30/10 at 12:36 PM
ColoradoPoliticsPPCEthicsTrustMarketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

Why Fox, MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS look so biased; journalists are co-oped by political, military sources

While I’m a conservative and report more about Republican politics than I cover Democrats, I also feel free to call out Republicans and conservatives when I think they’re off course. I also interview and cover Democrats when I can. This, of course, upsets conservative readers who expect conservatives, Republicans and journalists and bloggers who share their values to be “loyal.” The same thing goes for Democrats and liberals and the journalists who share their values. When someone fails to follow Obama over the cliff, the dissident is soundly criticized.

In one of the best articles I’ve seen about media bias since I first subscribed to the Columbia Journalism Review back in 1961 or 1962, The Dangers of embedded journalism in war and politics, the Washington Post’s David Ignatius explains why Fox looks biased to liberals and all the other networks and main stream papers look biased to conservatives. Having been a journalist and publisher for more than 45 years and a blogger for more than 7, I totally relate.

Simply put, we’re all human. We remember the last thing we hear or read, and we are much more likely to read and listen to those who reflect our views than those who don’t. I read my first employer, The Wall Street Journal, much more than I read The New York Times or Washington Post, although I read all of their web sites several times on most days. I watch Fox now and then, CNN when there is breaking news and ABC evening news a few nights a week. I never watch MSNBC, NBC or CBS, because I don’t trust them and there’s only so much time available. I read the liberal Coloradopols along with the conservative RockyMountainRight and PeoplesPressCollective. Politico.com is moderately liberal and my favorite political site because it’s what political leaders from both parties read. In Colorado, The Denver Post’s The Spot is the best political blog for news and gossip. Everybody in Colorado politics is or should be reading it.

The Columbia Journalism Review, however, has become a left wing political journal, and I no longer subscribe to it or read it or its web site.

In any case, read the Ignatius piece. It is right on.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 05/02/10 at 10:31 AM
ColoradoPoliticsPPCEthicsTrustMediaMarketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

Looks like paid bloggers are attacking Jane Norton big time

In an obviously coordinated attack on Republican Jane Norton, bloggers supporting Democrat Michael Bennet and, most likely a few amatures who are supporting Republicans Ken Buck and Tom Wiens, are showing how the comments sections of blogs can be used to spew hatred and lies about their political opponents. These attack artists are making Tea Party activists look like pacifists.

While I can’t prove it, I strongly suspect that 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 04/22/10 at 03:34 AM
ColoradoPoliticsPPCEthicsMarketing and SalesBloggingRead More

Ken Buck, Jane Norton, Scott McInnis, Dan Maes using Twitter, Facebook

Many of Colorado’s leading candidates for public office are using Twitter and FaceBook as well as their web sites and e-mail to reach and communicate with 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 02/07/10 at 10:05 AM
ColoradoPoliticsMarketing and SalesBloggingRead More

Conservatives trying to match hard left’s efforts to use bloggers, social networking to gain power

Conservatives in Washington and around the country are trying to match the hard left’s campaigns to capture the minds of America’s voters with the help of bloggers and other activists who use Twitter, FaceBook, e-mail and other new media to spread their talking points, reports Jerry Markon. The left has used similar tactics since Howard Dean burst on the sceneduring the 2004 presidential primaries. Conservatives believe that the left’s use of social networking technology helped President Barack Obama attract some 13 million activists and contributors to his campaign.

The Washington Post story makes it look like


The Business Word blog enters its 8th year

Yesterday was the seventh anniversary of The Business Word blog. So now we’re in our 8th year. I posted two stories on Jan. 31, 2003. This is post number 3,310.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 02/01/10 at 07:00 AM
Marketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

713 blog posts in 2009, 435 in 4th quarter

After we returned at the end of September from a wonderful vacation drive across 14 states and Ontario, I decided to shift the focus of my almost seven-year-old blog to the Colorado gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races from my focus on investing, speculating, the options markets and economics. Of course, I continue to blog on the markets and on health care markets and politics, as I have since I started this venture. As always, my goal is to add perspective and information to the issues that I cover. And, I love to give my opinions.

It’s hard to measure the quality of what appears on a blog or in the media. Everyone reads differently, which is why we have so many different opinions in politics and in the markets. Certainly, quantity is no measure of quality, but it does show the effort and time that goes into researching, reporting and understanding what’s going on.

Thus, after a rather slow first three quarters, in the fourth quarter of 2009, I wrote 435 blog posts, bringing my total for the year to 713. Since I began the blog, I’ve written 3,196 blog posts.

Often, I mention several people in a story.  A keyword search of this site shows that over the last couple of years or so, I’ve mentioned Obama in 205 blogs and Colorado’s Governor Bill Ritter in 121. Since September, I’ve mentioned Scott McInnis in 116 stories and Dan Maes in 53. Sen. Michael Bennet has been mentioned in 68 posts, Sen. Mark Udall 15, Jane Norton 49, Ken Buck 24 and Tom Wiens 13. During 2009, “Tea Party” has been mentioned in 13 posts and ObamaCare in 61. In almost seven years, “health care” has been in 725 posts, “Medicare” in 590, “health insurance” in 422, “insurance” in 554, “stocks” in 322, “markets” in 283 and “Colorado” in 347.

In addition to what I write here, I also post two or three times a day elsewhere. Mostly, I post in the comments sections on other blogs such as RockyMountainRight.com and on other Colorado conservatives’ blogs that belong to the Rocky Mountain Alliance 2.  I frequently post on wsj.com, Politico, Huffington Post, nytimes.com, barrons.com, denverpost.com and washingtonpost.com. I also post on Twitter and talk with friends on Facebook. SeekingAlpha.com also republishes my stories about stocks and speculating when I submit them. 

Why do I do it? I care about what’s happening to our country, and I enjoy following current events, especially politics and the markets. Writing a blog makes me research the big issues and do some original reporting. It helps me think about what’s going on. And I hope I add something to the conversation.

Thanks for reading.

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 01/01/10 at 10:38 AM
Marketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

I’ve joined Rocky Mountain Alliance 2.0

Yesterday I was honored to be invited to join the Rocky Mountain Alliance 2.0 of Colorado bloggers.  Appreciate these kind words from Ben DeGrow at Mount Virtus:

For the first time in quite awhile, the Rocky Mountain Alliance has started to grow again. We have two new members who represent excellent additions. I invite you to check them out and add them to your regular blog reading (if you haven’t already):  The Business Word by Don Johnson has become a must-read for anyone seeking coverage of the unfolding major Republican primary races in Colorado, with great analysis and interviews Michelle Morin is a leader in the Teller County Tea Party movement, and her site Mom 4 Freedom has been a leading Colorado-based voice in the fight against Obama Care and other proposed costly government intrusions into our freedom

The alliance includes these active blogs:

 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 11/12/09 at 10:15 AM
Marketing and SalesBloggingRead More

Steve Rubel, Mari Smith blog on Twitter, Facebook, social networking

Trying to figure out how to use Facebook, Twitter and other social network strategies?

The Steve Rubel Lifestream looks like a good resource. And I hear Mari Smith is the Facebook guru.

Links:

A guide for Twitter newbies.

Mari Smith blogs on Facebook.

 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 10/15/09 at 07:38 AM
Marketing and SalesBloggingPermalink

6 years of blogging on health policy, economics and stock picking

Six years ago I began publishing this blog on health policy, economics and stock picking.

In the early years, I focused on health policy and economics. We were, after all, publishing

 

Posted by Donald E. L. Johnson on 02/01/09 at 09:42 PM
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