Deck in 2022 Case Studies

February 8, 2023
In 2022 we had the pleasure of working with hundreds of campaigns. In this blog post I'll walk through how a few of those campaigns used Deck.

Flipping a chamber

Tara Probst was elected to Pennsylvania’s new 189th district in 2022 with 56% of the vote, outperforming Deck’s internal forecasting and public polling by 2 points. She flipped the district and helped PA House Democrats take control of the chamber for the first time in 12 years. 

In 2015 Tara Probst was elected as the first female mayor of Stroudsburg Borough, Pennsylvania. Rep. Probst decided to run for State Representative in 2022 and didn’t take any vote for granted, she knew it would be a tough race. Besides running a robust field program, Rep. Probst’s campaign wanted to make sure voters saw her message on multiple platforms.

Reaching voters across multiple platforms

The Probst campaign used Deck’s Persuasion and Turnout lists to run a digital ad campaign across Facebook, Instagram, over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV (CTV). The Probst campaign directly loaded Deck’s targeted lists in Meta Business Manager using our integration. They also used Athena, a digital tool that uses addresses to target voters on OTT and CTV. Across these platforms, the campaign spent $12,000 and got over 350,000 impressions. 

A Targeted approach

In a state house district of only about 19,000 voters, the margins are narrow, and a campaign only has a few hundred people to persuade and a couple thousand to turnout. Deck’s targeted lists allowed this campaign to really drill down on their most essential universes. This helped them run a more efficient campaign, allowing them to spend more to focus on their most important voters across multiple different contact tacts.

Fundraising’s New Horizon

Campaigns increasingly use texting as a low-cost and low-effort way to solicit small-dollar donations. Peer to Peer (p2p) texting helps campaigns reach younger voters, reach potential donors across multiple platforms, and grow their digital fundraising audience. 

Campaigns up and down the ballot made use of Deck’s Fundraising lists for texting this cycle. Some notable examples also include John Fetterman for Senate (PA), Tim Walz for Governor (MN), Tony Evers for Governor (WI), and Jason Crow for Congress (CO). Deck’s Fundraising lists are successful because they find campaign in-district supporters that are also likely to contribute to the campaign. Deck’s fundraising scores are campaign specific and use real individual-level donor history to predict future contributions. 

Finding supporters and raising money

Rep. Ryan’s campaign used Deck’s Fundraising lists to run a peer-to-peer texting program to solicit donations. They texted a list of about 250,000 people in April of 2022 and raised over $13,000 in one pass. Rep. Jason Crow’s campaign did a similar smaller-scale effort and texted 4,600 potential donors, and raised $800. In each of these examples, the campaign raised money, identified new supporters, grew their “opt-in” texting lists for future passes, and learned more about their existing and potential donor bases. 

Campaigning in a newly drawn district

After serving three terms in the Michigan state house, Kevin Hertel ran for State Senate in the new 12th district. Senator Hertel flipped the seat and helped Democrats take control of the chamber for the first time in 40 years, securing a Democratic trifecta.

As a Representative, Hertel advocated for public education, infrastructure, and helped lead the charge on raising Michigan’s minimum wage. He needed a new strategy to secure voters for his Senate race in the previously Republican district. With Deck, Hertel’s team created an effective campaign to target his voters. 

“In close races, every vote counts.” 

Hertel decided not to take to any chances and used all of Deck’s features to reach his supporters. To reach the right voters, Senator Hertel exported Deck’s persuasion lists specific for each tactic: knocking on doors, text banking, phonebanking, and sending mail. He found success by running Facebook ads to reach voters who supported his policies on critical issues. Deck’s targeted lists made it easy to reach the right voters with the right message, sending Facebook ads about union endorsements to his persuasion audience and ads about  the environment to his turnout audience. 

Because he targeted the right voters, Senator Hertel bested his opponent and secured his seat by only 400 votes. “In close races, every vote counts,” Hertel shared. Using Deck, his team focused on giving the right message to the most important targets, running a more efficient campaign.

Making Digital Easy

Becky Fast is a teacher and former city councilor who was first elected to the Johnson County Commission in 2018. This year she was running for re-election with limited time and resources. Fast wanted to run targeted Facebook ads but was unsure of how to build an audience to make sure the right voters got the right message. Creating audiences for Facebook ads in a specific voting district is difficult, especially with recent changes made to Facebook’s ad targeting for political campaigns. 

Deck provided the tech tools needed for Fast to run a low-effort, high-impact digital campaign. Deck’s data visualizations helped Fast craft her path to victory in 2022. Fast then used Deck’s list-builder tool to create audiences and easily make adjustments to Deck’s recommended lists for her specific strategy.  

Fast looked to other campaigns’ success to shape her digital strategy. She saw short videos racking up interactions and likes, and so ran a series of videos promoting her campaign. In all, Fast spent $6,411 on ads and generated 9,275,370 impressions. Fast won her race with 64% of the vote this cycle after winning in 2018 by only 575 votes. Fast used Deck’s digital advertising tools to quickly and easily run targeted ads that fit her strategy and reminded her district of her successes.

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