A new paradigm: JCER proves you don't need millions of dollars to reach millions of people

Nov 09, 2012, 14:58 ET from Jewish Council for Education and Research

NEW YORK, Nov. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- This election cycle, the Jewish Council for Education and Research (JCER) proved that a combination of humor, social media, unvarnished truth-telling – and a dash of celebrity – could carry a powerful political message to millions of people with a comparatively small investment.

A Super PAC operating on a budget of less than $450,000, JCER released a stream of uncensored videos, including "Wake the F*** Up!" and "Don't Let Mitt Turn Back Time on Women," that stood out again and again in the high-volume final stretch of the race. They topped the Wall Street Journal's online charts for 3 of the final 6 weeks in the election – spending more time in the #1 spot than either campaign, and achieving higher aggregated rankings on the top 10 list than all other Super PACs combined.

The videos, released through the PAC's Schlep Labs crowd-sourcing project, were a successful follow up to JCER's debut 2008 project, "The Great Schlep," a viral video and grassroots campaign that motivated hundreds of young people to reach out to seniors in Florida and build support for Obama's election.

"We knew that people were going to get inundated with campaign messaging this cycle, so we wanted to find a way to cut through," said JCER co-founder and president Mik Moore. "We had seen the power that smart, funny messaging can have via social media with the Great Schlep. And we knew that there were lots of talented people out there with something to say and a lot of great ideas that needed a home. So this cycle we took it to the next level and found that our work resonated with a lot of people, because sometimes being funny is the best way to tell the truth."

Together, JCER's pro-Obama videos topped 11.5 million views and sustained crucially high levels of online buzz throughout the final weeks. Individually, their success was remarkable:

  • "Wake the F*** Up!": Samuel L. Jackson's uncensored wake-up call was one of the most-watched videos of the election season, and, as one of Mashable's most-shared ads on YouTube, a major rallying point for GOTV efforts. 4,831,531 views.
  • "Let my People Vote": Also one of Mashable's most-shared ads on YouTube, Sarah Silverman's hilarious and foul-mouthed warning to students, minorities and the elderly about the dangers of new Republican-driven voter ID laws topped the charts in late September. 2,567,198 views.
  • "Actually…": This video series, launched in partnership with the American Bridge Super PAC, featured Rosie Perez, Cher, Sarah Silverman, W. Kamau Bell and other performers riffing on clips of Mitt Romney's outrageous and untrue statements. Perez' clip earned her appearances on several political talk shows. 2,216,748 views.
  • "Indecent Proposal": Sarah Silverman's lewd offer to Sheldon Adelson if he redirected his campaign spending drew attention toward the issue of money in politics. 1,821,804 views.
  • "Call your Zeyde": JCER's over-the-top Carly Rae Jepsen spoof urged young Jewish Americans to multiply their political power and reach out across generations. 126,244 views.
  • "Childish Things": JCER's forward-looking GOTV message was produced by millennials and fully crowdsourced. 69,815 views.
  • "Israelis on Obama": JCER fact-checked Republican candidates' assumptions about Israeli foreign relations through direct interviews with Israeli thought leaders and citizens. 20,987 views.

More information on metrics and interviews with JCER officials available upon request.

Jonathan Lipman
Office: (202) 560-5990


SOURCE Jewish Council for Education and Research