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Obama digital guru makes play for Labour Party account

LONDON - Thomas Gensemer, the mastermind behind Barack Obama's ground breaking, digital presidential campaign is in London to open an office of Blue State Digital and make a bid for the Labour Party account.

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In an interview in the Guardian today Gensemer talks about the tactics his agency used to help Obama win and how they could work for Gordon Brown and Labour.

While in the UK Gensemer hopes to build on the links he has already established with Labour having worked on Jon Cruddas's bid in 2006-07 for the deputy leadership of the Labour party and Ken Livingstone's unsuccessful re-election bid last year for London mayor.

His ultimate goal appears to be winning the party's digital account.

Gensemer told The Guardian: "We're very eager, and I think it [the Obama campaign] would work equally well here.

"I don't think they [the Labour Party] are going to raise a half a billion dollars, but it certainly would raise far more money than it costs and you could make a big difference.

"As our work with Jon Cruddas and Ken Livingstone shows, if you ask people to do things they will do it, in similar numbers that we see in the States."

Blue State Digital will find itself competing against Tangent One. The UK agency handles the Labour Party account and recently appointed former Labour Party head of corporate communications, Paul Simpson, to manage it.

Last night while speaking at an event at City University, London, Gensemer spoke about the importance of understanding your audience, integrating online and offline campaigns and using traditional campaigning methods.

"Organisations must learn how to lower the barriers to participation and reach all constituents by communicating to them in easy, action-oriented and personalised ways."

Read Gordon's Republic blog -- Obama digital guru says it can work for Labour.

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