Bloomberg Relying on Social Media “..among the most unorthodox moves yet by the heavy-spending billionaire..” By Todd Horwitz, Bubba Trading

 

Michael Bloomberg’s presidential campaign is hiring hundreds of workers in California to post regularly on their personal social-media accounts in support of the candidate and send text messages to their friends about him.

The effort, which could cost millions of dollars, is launching ahead of California’s March 3rd primary and could later be deployed nationwide, according to people familiar with the matter and documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. It is among the most unorthodox moves yet by the heavy-spending billionaire and blurs the line between traditional campaign organizing and the distribution of sponsored content.

Most campaigns encourage supporters to post on social media about their candidates but paying them at this scale to do so on their personal accounts is unusual, experts say. A California staffer and the documents reviewed by the Journal describe a multimillion-dollar-a-month effort aimed at helping Mr. Bloomberg attract support after he entered the race months behind his rivals. The documents say the campaign is adopting a strategy, which it says the Trump campaign used effectively, to try to influence potential voters through people they know and trust rather than relying on outreach from strangers.

The Bloomberg campaign says deputy field organizers are sharing their own content, not ads, and that there are no requirements around how frequently they post to social media accounts. “We are meeting voters everywhere on any platform that they consume their news,” said campaign spokeswoman Sabrina Singh. “One of the most effective ways of reaching voters is by activating their friends and network to encourage them to support Mike for president.”

Earlier this month, Bloomberg paid Instagram meme-makers to promote his campaign to millions of followers. Facebook said that political campaigns that pay influencers to post content aren’t subject to the social network’s rules around political ads, sparking concerns that politicians will exploit the loophole to skirt accountability.  The Instagram meme accounts mention that these political posts were paid by Bloomberg but don’t show up in Facebook’s ad library.

 

Todd “Bubba” Horwitz

Financial Markets and Political Commentary

 

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About the author

Todd Horwitz - Author of “Average Joe Options“. Todd began his trading career in 1980 at the CBOE. He was one of the original traders in the OEX & helped start the SPX. He is a member the CME where he trades S&P futures as well as foreign currencies & is a regular contributor to CNBC, Bloomberg, BNN, Fox & many other major news networks.