Monday, October 15, 2007

Meet-n-Greet Attendance Up Infinite Percent!

If you move from zero to any number, the rise, no matter how small, is an infinite percent. So, with the arrival of Pat Hope, the attendance at yesterday’s Meet-n-Greet with Mike McMenamin (Republican) rose by an infinite percentage over the attendance at the Meet-n-Greet for Josh Ruebner (Green) on Sept. 30. Mr. Hope was the only attendee; he is the president of the Buckingham Community Civic Association and a Democratic precinct captain for Buckingham.

I did not realize either that Scott McCaffrey on his blog at the Sun Gazette wrote about my getting Skunked! at the Josh Ruebner Meet-n-Greet, and he said it was that I’m realizing the limits of the blogosphere.

I’m not sure that’s true. I knew that getting people to come would be tough, and I was surprised and chagrined now with two bad turnouts (Mary Hynes is next Monday—Let’s do this people!), but I’m not sure if it’s totally an uncaring readership, or a readership that doesn’t move at the blog editor’s whim.

I am not expecting people to ask “How high?” when I say “Jump.” I knew this would be a tough sell, at least partly because the nature of the blogosphere is one where, as Howard Dean’s team learned, they read and get excited but do not DO.

But I have received a handful of apologies from people who did not go to Mr. Ruebner’s event, and one person even wrote in advance to apologize that she could not make yesterday’s! I know, too, that many of the people who read this blog cannot make it—kids, school, working out-of-town, etc.

Mr. McMenamin and I were talking and he said he was not feeling the pressure this year that he did last year when he first ran for office. The sense of urgency among the voters just does not seem to be there.

Yesterday, we fought a nice day, the Redskins-Packers game, and perhaps some voter ennui. Eh, what are you going to do?

By the way, if we hit even two people next time with Mary Hynes (Monday Oct. 22, 7:00 p.m., Arlington Oaks Community Center), that would be a 100 percent increase in just one cycle of the event. We’d be “The Fastest Growing Political Event in Arlington.” I love statistics.

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Nice of Scott to take a cheap shot at you. Of course, looking at the Webb comment directly above that, it doesn't look like he was in a particularly charitable mood that day.

My experience is that people won't come to something just because they read it on a blog (just like they won't go to something just because they read it in a newspaper). But it's a free and easy part of the advertising layering process. If they read it on a blog ... and hear a friend mention it ... and see it in the party/neighborhood newsletter ... then you get turnout.

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