The Swingfluentials

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Information about The Swingfluentials

Published on March 18, 2008

Author: FAS.research



This is a further evolved version of the case study presentation FAS.research gave at the Politics Online Conference 2008 outlining our swing voter strategy for the Viennese Green Party in the 2005 Parliamentary elections. The Green Party hired FAS to help them breakout of their base of partisans (about 10% of voters) into the mainstream, bring disenfranchised moderates back into the political process, and raise the level of political discourse by introducing challenging progressive ideas to the mainstream in a way that that they'd be considered and discussed by moderates.

A key piece of our solution was to identify and effectively message "Swingfluentials," those rare swing voters with large political discussion networks whose members do not agree on political issues. Swingfluentials are 5% or less of the voter base yet are the most important group for influencing the 40% of voters who are moderate. However, you have to create messages they can repeat in mixed political company. Most political influentials, or Poli-fluentials, are surrounded by people who agree with them so can't influence swing voters. This, along with other strategies, proved effective increasing the party's share of voters by 10% and winning three new seats - the best performance in the prior two elections. FAS is working with the party on the 2009 elections.

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