Since the election, my former co-worker Sean Gallagher has been doing a great series on the presidential election’s digital campaigns for Ars Technica. After reviewing the campaigns’ financials, his overall conclusion is that by hiring great people and focusing on open-source and off-the-shelf tools, the Obama campaign created a competitive advantage while saving huge amounts of money.
…the Romney campaign spent $23.6 million on outside technology services—most of it on outside “digital media” consulting and data management. It outsourced most of its basic IT operations, while the Obama campaign did the opposite—buying hardware and software licenses, and hiring its own IT department.
How Obama’s campaign spent $11.3 million on technology and digital strategies
How Romney’s campaign spent $23.6 million on digital consultants and outsourcing
PBS NEWHOUR “Romney Campaign Enlists Help of Orca Project to Get Vote Out”
Obama Campaign’s “Dashboard: The Tools You Need to Help Re-Elect President Obama”