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Local Campaigns Reach Uncharted Territory - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Local Campaigns Reach Uncharted Territory

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Election day is just one week from tomorrow and local campaigns are starting to heat up. But, one technique may cause some trouble for a Fargo City Commission candidate.

Fargo Police has received a complaint against John Strand after he projected his slogan 'I Stand with Strand' on a city water tower. Fargo Police aren't releasing who filed the complaint, but whoever did says Strand could be removed from the race for using public property for campaign purposes. Strand took down the projection when concerns were raised over its legality, but kept another projection on a building along Broadway. That one, the campaign says, is fair game. They have permission both to project onto the building and from the building across the street.

The tactic may be sparking some discussing, but there's no denying it catches your eye. And it seems to be catching on.

When a campaign needs to be seen in a new light, it usually comes to Raul Gomez's office.

"I feel like campaigns have kind of ignored the rules of marketing for a long time," Gomez, Strand's campaign manager, said. "marketing is something that kind of demands you get people's attention."

His innovative style has been known to get media outlets talking in the past. Two campaigns for Strand's past races for school board have resulted in published articles.

"The truth is, in marketing, if it's not interesting it's invisible."

His latest concept is using what's called a Gobo to project images onto buildings and structures.

"It's almost like science fiction, or something you see that you wouldn't expect. And it catches your attention," he explained.

This conclusion came nearly a decade after running campaigns for offices all over the city and watching candidates pour more money into the election. Now, his campaigns aim for the "weird" factor.

Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker's campaign staff seems to be following suit with their Most Interesting Man In the World theme. His Facebook page has shared several memes seemingly targeted at a younger generation.

"If we want to compete on the same level of our resources versus their resources, we will loose that. So we have to do something different," Gomez said.
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