One of the largest full-service GOP shops has unveiled a new fundraising play, adding to the cascade of offerings in the space.
In recent weeks, the non-profit fundraising app Prytany has launched, and Anedot founder Paul Dietzel unveiled the platform Give.GOP, which he subsequently had to rebrand as Right.US. Now, Majority Strategies unveiled a new company that will offer a fundraising service to help GOP clients compete on the small-donor front.
“We’re a full-scale comprehensive approach to fundraising,” said Lindsay Jacobs, executive director of Majority Money.
While it exists as an independent company under Majority’s umbrella, Jacobs said the service is “powered by Majority Strategies consulting staff.” It charges based on what services are being offered and the size of the effort.
Fundraising has become an area of friction on the right as the GOP has struggled to match Democrats’ prowess in raising small-dollar contributions online. One solution party leaders have settled on is to push candidates and groups to adopt WinRed as their single payment processor. But that heavy-handed interference in the market has had consultants grumbling.
Majority Money is not taking a side in this fight: Jacobs said the firm is platform agnostic.
“Whether it’s with WinRed or Anedot, we’re focused on building out fundraising plans for our candidates and employing digital and data,” she told C&E.
Each client’s data is proprietary. “We don’t do anything without their permission. At the end of the day, they own their data.”
The firm will help clients chase small-dollar donors online and through a texting and phones program, organize fundraisers with rainmakers, and do direct mail soliciting. At the same time, it will be educating clients on modern best practices, which have eluded some on the right.
Jacobs noted that when it comes to small-dollar fundraising online, “audience building is really important. It takes time. Digital fundraising is a long-term investment with a heavy upfront acquisition cost.”
Still, it’s not unusual for a Republican officeholder to point to the amount ActBlue channeled to his or her opponent last cycle and note their campaign should be receiving that same amount from its digital program.
“I think we need to remember what ActBlue actually is. It’s a platform, it’s not doing the fundraising for clients,” said Jacobs. “ActBlue didn’t do the fundraising for Democrats. Democrats knew how to use it as part of a successful fundraising strategy.”
The old adage that Democrats build lists and Republicans rent them is something that Jacobs knows she has to help clients overcome.
“When you rent a list like that, you don’t have the data to know why they gave to a specific client or cause. There’s no guarantee that they’re going to support our clients,” she explained. “We want to focus on building lists that are specific and unique to each one of our clients and not taking lists and forcing them to work for our clients.”
Jacobs said the service won’t change the fundamentals of how clients raise money. “We are never going to be able to get rid of call time, get rid of events, get rid of networking,” she said. “There will always be major donors to write big checks.
“But our candidates are just starting to realize that you need a data-centric approach in 2020 and beyond. They need to turn to other options and build audiences of folks online in order to reach their fundraising goals.”