Watching the world- Use of bulk SMS for political campaign

  06 August 2015

SMS campaign has proven beyond reasonable doubts that it remains a viable and effective option for massive success in the political arena. SMS political campaign might not be that popular in Nigeria yet but the truth is many successful political aspirants has made good use of this at time past and have great success stories.

Here is a view around the world to see how SMS has been the game changer for some top political success in recent years.


When we talk about bulk SMS for political campaign around the world, where better can we start if not that of present United States of America President Barack Obama. Many Political figures in the world has come to agree that the 2008 SMS campaign by president Barack Obama had a major say in the election outcome.

The then presidential aspirant set up a customized short code for the campaign and gave people the option to opt in into the campaign. The game changer for the campaign was when he announced the choice of Joe Biden as his running mate to about 3 million persons through a text message. These 3 million individuals were to become active subscribers to his SMS political campaign.

Another important aspect of his campaign was that he allowed for people’s response, making it interactive and up till today the subscribers still receives messages from the president.

Then presidential aspirant Barack Obama used bulk SMS to get more people to register for the elections, get more young people to get involved, engage the public, inform the public to remember to turn-up on election day and to get donations.

Obama did fundraising through bulk SMS that in few months after the start he has raised $49.4 million from text message donations, while his opposition Romney raised $12 million, it was reported.

President Barack Obama also used mobile websites then for the campaign where voters can register for the SMS campaign.

He was described by many as the world mobile marketer of that year and for good reasons. Barack Obama saw opportunity where the opposition did not. Was the SMS campaign a success? Well, he is now the president of the United States of America.



Yes, even before Barack Obama’s stride making popular SMS political campaign, as far back of 2001, a massive SMS campaign forced then President Joseph Estrada out of his seat.

President Joseph Estrada has been found guilty of some unwholesome deeds and had to be tried for impeachment. But due to some circumstances, the court decided not to look into all evidences against him and so he was not impeached.

A massive SMS campaign though was pushed out by the anti-Estrada protesters, which saw about 7 million text messages sent in a week, and within the week despite prior refusal, Joseph Estrada was gone.

Estrada himself was to admit later the cause of his forced resignation, he said “The uprising was a result of a coup de text; the text messaging generation”. Little wonder Philippines is considered by many to be the text messaging center of the world.



3 days before the general elections in Spain in 2004, Madrid commuter train system was bombed on March 11th 2004, killing 191 people and leaving 1,800 injured. The general notion for who was responsible for the bombing was the Al Qaeda terrorist group but the ruling party had other ideas.

A day before the elections, a single text message from a group of University graduate students turned up thousands of protesters in front of the headquarters of the ruling party. And although prior to that event the ruling party was leading in the race, Jose Rodriguez Zapatero of the opposition party became the prime minister, usurping the ruling prime minister Rajay in the process.

That simple text message campaign is still believed to be the massive change factor in that year’s election.



In 2006, the 56th president of Mexico Felipe Calderon launched a massive SMS campaign days before his narrow win over his opposition Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. It was generally agreed that the campaign done days before the election had a big say in the final result.

It is obvious that many successful political figures over the years that have been bright enough to see the dividends of SMS as communication and engagement tool has never regretted using this for their campaigns. Sadly, lots of politicians in the Nigeria arena are not currently seeing this massive opportunity. Click here to see ways politicians can use bulk SMS to win elections.

What we provide is a quality bulk SMS platform to use for your political SMS campaigns. Sign up an account right away if you don’t have one and see how bulk SMS can make your political dreams come true.

What do you think about bulk SMS effectiveness in the political arena, looking at the preview of the world? Let us know in the comment box below.





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