Thursday, October 2, 2008

7-Election '08

This is my third US presidential election (2nd one that I get to vote in) and I am loving it. I think it's a crazy system, but oh, boy, do I love all the high drama.

Today I heard about something that really tickles my fancy. 7-Eleven customers can choose between Obama or McCain coffee cups and the results of the informal poll are tallied daily. Apparently this poll correctly predicted the results of the last two elections.
In the 2000 7-election their George W Bush coffee cup outsold the Al Gore cup by just 1%. The 2004 7-election results tracked identically with published national results. 51% for Bush and 40% for Kerry

As a former marketer, I think this is a brilliant marketing campaign. Kudo's to the marketing team at 7-Eleven. You can follow the results daily.

I hope that this year, before all the journalists start commenting on polls, that they do a short statistics course so that they can correctly report on polls. I become rather irate when I read reports that claim that candidate x has overtaken candidate y in the polls by 2 percentage points, only to discover that the margin of error is 6% and the difference between the candidates is only 2%. How difficult is it to understand the concept of a margin of error? Then there are all the gleeful reports where the journalists haven't checked the study design...

1 comment:

Shell said...

Let me tell you what ELSE 7-11 is doing. Now, we all know that I'm a staunch Libertarian so I don't have any major investment in either Obama or McCain but what I *do* find offensive is the voter registration volunteers staked outside of any 7-11 who outright ignore my husband and I when we walk in but attack any African American potential voter that walks by. Every one of them has told me, when asked, that they are Democrats.

This is only furthered by the new "register to vote" commercials targeting African Americans.

Anyone who says this election isn't about race, doesn't get out much.

I am just appalled that we've stooped to this level to get votes.