Since … ”Facebook’s advertising platform is supremely effective at persuading Facebook users to click, buy, or vote. In 2015, Facebook’s revenue from advertising was $17.9 billion dollars.”
Perhaps, it’s worth a deep dive into how their “micro-targeting tools” actually work, if you have the ‘deep pockets’, that is.
But first some little known background, on the ‘Data-bunker’ Trump operation that, used the levers of the Facebook platform, to persuade the persuadable. Once Trump won the Nomination, they moved into another “marketing gear” — all empowered by a sophisticated database named Project Alamo ...
by Joshua Green and Sasha Issenberg, bloomberg.com -- October 27, 2016
To outsiders, the Trump campaign often appears to be powered by little more than the candidate’s impulses and Twitter feed. But after Trump locked down the GOP nomination by winning Indiana’s primary, Kushner tapped Parscale, a political novice who built web pages for the Trump family’s business and charities, to begin an ambitious digital operation fashioned around a database they named Project Alamo. With Trump atop the GOP ticket, Kushner was eager to grow fast. “When we won the nomination, we decided we were going to do digital fundraising and really ramp this thing up to the next level,” says a senior official. Kushner, this official continued, “reached out to some Silicon Valley people who are kind of covert Trump fans and experts in digital marketing. They taught us about scaling. There’s really not that much of a difference between politics and regular marketing.”
It’s just another product to sell … and just the right consumer Buttons to push ...
On Oct. 24, Trump’s team began placing spots on select African American radio stations. In San Antonio, a young staffer showed off a South Park-style animation he’d created of Clinton delivering the “super predator” line (using audio from her original 1996 sound bite), as cartoon text popped up around her: “Hillary Thinks African Americans are Super Predators.” The animation will be delivered to certain African American voters through Facebook “dark posts”—nonpublic posts whose viewership the campaign controls so that, as Parscale puts it, “only the people we want to see it, see it.” The aim is to depress Clinton’s vote total. “We know because we’ve modeled this,” says the official. “It will dramatically affect her ability to turn these people out.”
The Trump Data-bunker had other “Suppress the Vote” marketing efforts too. When Parscale was confronted by 60-Minutes‘ Lesley Stahl:
… the campaign was accused, in a Businessweek article, of trying to suppress the vote of "idealistic white liberals, young women and African Americans," a charge he denies.
Lesley Stahl: Did you micro target by race?
Brad Parscale: No we did not. Not at all.
Well someone did that negative micro-targeting, convincing voters that “Clinton sold weapons to ISIS” — perhaps it was of Parscale’s many many Vendors, be they foreign or domestic ...
Powered by Project Alamo and data supplied by the RNC and Cambridge Analytica, his team is spending $70 million a month, much of it to cultivate a universe of millions of fervent Trump supporters, many of them reached through Facebook. By Election Day, the campaign expects to have captured 12 million to 14 million e-mail addresses and contact information (including credit card numbers) for 2.5 million small-dollar donors, who together will have ponied up almost $275 million.
[...] Parscale was building his own list of Trump supporters, beyond the RNC’s reach. Cambridge Analytica’s statistical models isolated likely supporters whom Parscale bombarded with ads on Facebook, while the campaign bought up e-mail lists from the likes of Gingrich and Tea Party groups to prospect for others. Some of the ads linked directly to a payment page, others—with buttons marked “Stand with Trump” or “Support Trump”—to a sign-up page that asked for a name, address, and online contact information. While his team at Giles-Parscale designed the ads, Parscale invited a variety of companies to set up shop in San Antonio to help determine which social media ads were most effective. Those companies test ad variations against one another—the campaign has ultimately generated 100,000 distinct pieces of creative content—and then roll out the strongest performers to broader audiences. At the same time, Parscale made the vendors, tech companies with names such as Sprinklr and Kenshoo, compete Apprentice-style; those whose algorithms fared worst in drumming up donors lost their contracts. Each time Parscale returned to San Antonio from Trump Tower, he would find that some vendors had been booted from their offices.
Did those real-life episodes of The Apprentice-meet-Survivor to generate the “best Ad content” — ever “work with remote vendors”, in terms of targeting or messaging?
Inquiring minds should want to know. It’s clear that Parscale used “micro-targeting” to the nth degree ...
by Joel Winston, medium.com -- Nov 18, 2016
Constructing the Project Alamo Database
Under the guidance of Jared Kushner, a senior campaign advisor and son-in-law of President-Elect Trump, Parscale quietly began building his own list of Trump supporters. Trump’s revolutionary database, named Project Alamo, contains the identities of 220 million people in the United States, and approximately 4,000 to 5,000 individual data points about the online and offline life of each person. Funded entirely by the Trump campaign, this database is owned by Trump and continues to exist.
To start, Parscale uploaded the names, email addresses, and phone numbers of known Trump supporters into the Facebook advertising platform. Next, Parscale used Facebook’s “Custom Audiences from Customer Lists” to match these real people with their virtual Facebook profiles. With Facebook’s “Audience Targeting Options” feature, ads can be targeted to people based on their Facebook activity, ethic affinity, or “location and demographics like age, gender and interests. You can even target your ad to people based on what they do off of Facebook.”
Parscale then expanded Trump’s pool of targeted Facebook users using “Lookalike Audiences”, a powerful data tool that automatically found other people on Facebook with “common qualities” that “look like” known Trump supporters. Finally, Parscale used Facebook’s “Brand Lift” survey capabilities to measure the success of the ads.
No wonder, Zuckerman has been hesitant to talk about this — that’s quite the Data-bunker “operation” he has there himself. Hmmm, I wonder if those 100K in “admitted” Russian Political Ad-buys — are really just the tip of the “list-sharing” iceberg?
In June, Parscale granted his first national interview, to Wired, to preemptively explain why the Federal Election Commission was about to report that an unknown agency in San Antonio was the Trump campaign’s largest vendor. In August, Giles-Parscale handled $9 million in business from Trump’s campaign; two months later, the company’s total haul had cleared $50 million, most of it money passing through to online ad networks at little markup. Parscale was delivering his services at such a discount that Kushner even worried that the agency’s efforts might have to be classified as an in-kind contribution. “Jared’s a big part of what gave me my power and ability to do what I’ve been doing,” says Parscale, who sees himself as more than just a staffer. “Because you know what I was willing to do? I was willing to do it like family.”
All in the Family — like a Fox in the Henhouse, as Open Secrets reports on the Trump Campaign’s top expenditure as:
|No. of Payments
What else will “family” do for family?
Perhaps repeat to an investigative reporter, a practiced line, with all the insistence and indignity that such a “family insult” requires …
Lesley Stahl: Facebook has admitted that the Russians spent $100,000 -- at least $100,000 -- on ads to influence the U.S. campaign. Does that bother you?
Brad Parscale: Yeah, I would not want a foreign entity to meddle in our election; you know, a government. Yeah, I mean, I wouldn't want that; I'm American.
But the question is: did the Trump campaign collude with the Russians – and as the digital director, was Parscale involved?
Brad Parscale: I think it's a joke. Like, at least for my part in it.
Lesley Stahl: Very few people think it's a joke.
Brad Parscale: I think it's a joke when they involve myself. 'Cause I know my own activities, and I know the activities of this campaign. I was there. It's just a farce.
Lesley Stahl: It's a farce that you colluded with the Russians?
Brad Parscale: Yeah. It's just a joke.
Hah, Hah … One big ‘tell’ in that “rehearsed” exchange however …
It was when Brad Parscale was emphasizing his own innocence of collusion, and said:
“… at least for my part in it.”
Brad Parscale, by this admission, is hinting that others may have had “a part in it” — such unpatriotic activities, as sharing Project Alamo’s targeting lists, with certain vendors, working somewhere — far off the Island.
Never go against “the Family” like that, Brad. Go Stupid Bigly, or Go Home. Haven’t all those Millions in revenue taught you anything?