While some political campaigns have raised more than half a million dollars with NFTs, one of the less obvious — but more powerful — benefits of using NFTs for campaign fundraising is to help build stronger grassroots communities. 

More than 160 campaign staffers, candidates, and elected officials joined a conversation with the cofounder of Reddit, Alexis Ohanian, and President Obama’s Director of Digital Strategy, Macon Phillips, to learn how to use NFTs on political campaigns. The 7-minute video above captures the most powerful moments as the conversation spanned from Alexis’ Obama Hope Poster epiphany to Macon’s biggest regret from the Obama 2008 transition. 

Here are the top 5 things we learned from the conversation:

  1. Grassroots donors want recognition and rewards. We sent a survey to over 1,400 grassroots donors and found that they are highly influential within their personal networks, but really disappointed in their experience with campaigns. They want more campaign updates, and fewer solicitations and hyperbolic emails. They would even increase their donations if they knew what their contributions were going towards. 
  2. NFTs are proof when you are early and right. As Alexis said, “You have the receipts.” The technology behind NFTs is like a timestamp, proving a donor’s early support and impact that can be publicly displayed on platforms like Electables. Think of it like when your favorite band makes it big — “It’s like wearing the shirt, except you get to wear the shirt on a truly global stage.”
  3. Grassroots donors and volunteers want acknowledgement. Macon emphasized the point that the relationship between campaigns and donors is about more than just donations. Donors want more than an impersonal thank you email (followed by hyperbolic campaign texts and emails). NFTs can act as personalized rewards that honor the meaningful relationship that campaigns have with their supporters. 
  4. NFTs can maintain the grassroots energy as the candidate switches from campaigning to governing. Macon’s biggest regret from the Obama campaign was the handoff from the election to governing, and the loss of the fired up communities that were so engaged during the campaign. NFTs can be the driving force to creating and maintaining decentralized, persistent communities that stick around and stay engaged long after the campaign is over. 
  5. NFTs lead to deep long-term engagement between donors. When you’re walking down the street and see a stranger wearing your home team’s jersey you feel instant connection and camaraderie. NFTs are the same, except that connection and camaraderie can happen thousands of miles away. As Macon said, “The candidate gets these folks into the same room. They stay in that room because of each other.” 

This was a great conversation and we’re excited to host more in the lead up to the launch of Electables, our Democratic NFT grassroots fundraising platform. Electables will help you raise more money AND build a stronger grassroots community that gives donors and volunteers the platform and the voice that they haven’t had before. You can get early access and invites to future events here: https://electables.com/

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