Skip to main content

Mitt Romney uses data mining for enhanced donor management

Rachel Wheeler Archive
It was recently reported by The Associated Press that Mitt Romney has been using a method of data mining that sifts through information to identify prospective donors. This strategy has included harnessing information about individuals, such as their purchasing histories and church attendance records, to determine if they were likely to become contributors.

Using donor management strategies may have helped Romney fund his campaign in what has been the most expensive presidential race yet. The total costs of the race are quickly approaching $2 billion, and in a competition that is sometimes won by the biggest spender, having the ability to single out potential donors can be helpful.

"I can look at data of any kind and say, 'I want to know who that $100 donor could be,'" said Tom Buxton, chief executive of the analytics team helping Romney's campaign. "We look at data of any kind."

For instance, data analytics can take consumers' voter registration information, charitable contribution records, property tax payments and survey responses into account. Using the proper data quality tools, analysts can identify valuable insight about whether individuals will be likely to make donations.