How to Raise Money for Presidential Campaigns: Gimmicks

Candidates in the 2008 presidential campaign have raised millions of dollars, but millions more are needed for advertising, travel, voter outreach and staff. Finding unique ways to interest more donors is part of the campaign fund-raising game.With competition for donor dollars increasing, presidential fund-raising methods have had to become more creative.

For instance, Sen. Hillary Clinton’s current fund-raising push includes an April 9 concert by Elton John. For contributors who raise $10,000 or more for her campaign, the reward will be an opportunity to mingle with the Clintons and John after the concert.

Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign is offering a chance to share a dinner with the candidate for four supporters who contribute funds through March 31. There is no minimum donation requirement.

To draw more supporters to his campaign, Sen. John McCain is featuring a college basketball contest on his Web site.

Will these gimmicks work? The proof will be in the first-quarter presidential fund-raising results released in April.

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