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DOVE’s Challenge


The Obama for America Team hired DOVE Marketing to develop the African American marketing strategy and radio creative for the 2012 Presidential Campaign. It was identified that 6 million African Americans were registered to vote in 2008 and did not. Another 6 million African Americans believed they were registered but were not due to the changes in voting laws in 2010, and another large group were not registered at all. Qualitative research conducted in February 2012 indicated that African Americans had favorable feelings for President Obama However, they had difficulty articulating exactly what the President was doing in Washington to have a positive impact on them and their issues, including--first and foremost economic issues around jobs and taxes affecting their money, helping to make healthcare more affordable and accessible, and fighting for teachers and improving education, giving their children more opportunity for higher education while supporting their institutions of higher learning.


The DOVE Touch


DOVE developed a brand architecture, messaging platform, event strategy and radio advertising to air on The Tom Joyner Morning Show, The Steve Harvey Morning Show, The Michael Baisden Show, The Warren Ballentine Show and pervasively in the swing states. Our overall objective was to increase the electorate of African American voters by clearing articulating the relevant issues and how the President has addressed them.The Radio Campaign consisted of a framing ad, followed by a a series of “real” voter testimonials to showcase the POTUS’ accomplishments around the key issues of health care reform, education, and economics. We then ran a "get out to vote" ad featuring the First Lady to emphasize the importance of voting. We ended the campaign with an ad using Jay-Z targeting millennial voters. This ad ran on all media including general market, Hispanic and African American stations. All of the ads had a compelling voter registration call to action through September, tags encouraging early voting through mid-October, followed by a Get Out to Vote call to action up to the election. We launched a Family Reunion Campaign to encourage voters to construct their family tree to ensure that everyone in their family was registered to vote. We also engaged surrogates to speak on behalf of the Campaign and activate events including the Steve Harvey Hoodie Awards and a major fundraiser at Tyler Perry’s Studios.


The DOVE Impact


President Obama was successfully re-elected. African Americans both registered to vote and voted early at record levels. In an NBC/New York Times Poll conducted in August, Romney had zero percent support among African Americans versus 94% for President Obama. Exit polls on election day credited voters of color with carrying key states for President Obama and ultimately assuring his victory. America's blacks voted at a higher rate than other minority groups in 2012 and by most measures surpassed the white turnout for the first time. Unlike other minority groups, the rise in voting for the slow-growing black population is due to higher turnout. While blacks make up 12% of the share of eligible voters, they represented 13% of total 2012 votes cast, according to exit polling. According to Amanda Brown, Political Director of Rock the Vote, millennials defied expectations and once again increased their share of the electorate and played a major role in the 2012 elections. According to CNN national exit polls, the share of votes cast by those under 30 increased from 18% in 2008 to 19% in 2012, and those voters favored the President by a margin of 60% to 36%. Millennials were the deciding factor in the President's wins in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, Virginia, and Nevada.

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