There's been something missing from this Vancouver mayoral campaign—and possibly, it can be traced to campaign finance reform.
We're just not seeing that many memorable videos from the candidates running for the top job.
In my mind, Yes Vancouver's Hector Bremner has staked out a big lead in this area. It makes me wonder if all the other candidates realize that video has become a central component of online marketing.
Of course, Bremner once headed his own marketing company, so he's ahead of the pack in understanding this.
You can see his latest video below, which has the clever message to "Legalize Housing". It packs a lot of information into 43 seconds.
Bremner's team has a predilection for bouncy, inspiring electronic music. The producer of the two most recent videos, Mark Marissen, knows that this is more likely to resonate with millennials, who will have to come out in large numbers for him to win.
In a way, it's a repudiation of political anthems favoured by baby boomers, such as the Parachute Club's "Rise Up" or Fleetwood Mac's "Don't Stop".
Below, you can watch another one of Bremner's videos, also produced by Marissen, that includes the sharpest production values of the campaign so far in Vancouver.
Bremner's first video, which was launched after his nomination, had a bit more of a canned approach, though it was still very effective.
It also managed to accomplish its primary objective—letting people know that there's a new party called Yes Vancouver with a diverse group of candidates.
In second place in the video wars, though trailing by a significant margin, is the NPA.
It's posted five videos on its YouTube channel, including one in Mandarin, all trying to boost the name recognition of mayoral candidate Ken Sim.
However, Sim doesn't speak any Chinese dialect in the Chinese-language video, which has only six views on YouTube. It may have attracted more attention had Sim tried to speak a few words of Cantonese or Mandarin.
The English-language version, on the other hand, has nearly 13,000 page views.
Another NPA video focuses on Sim's personal history growing up in Vancouver and going into business.
Independent candidate Shauna Sylvester has put out only one video, but it's still enough to get her into third place. It's earthy and authentic, like the candidate herself. But for the most part, Sylvester has been relying more on low-cost video clips disseminated over Twitter than slickly packaged and edited videos.
Coalition Vancouver's Wai Young also has only one campaign video, but it's not even on her party's website. For this, she gets a fourth-place ribbon.
Surprisingly, independent mayoral candidate Kennedy Stewart hasn't posted a single campaign video on YouTube, even though he's used this social-media platform extensively as the NDP MP for South Burnaby.
Expect that to change before voting day.
Obama knew how to do campaign videos
One of the great political videos of the modern era was Barack Obama's "Forward", which coincided with his 2012 reelection campaign. It goes straight to the heart, not to mention the emotional centre of the brain.
As you view it, ask yourself: doesn't it just make you want to get out and vote?
And for those who miss those old campaign standards, check out the videos below by the Parachute Club and Fleetwood Mac.
Okay, okay, I get it—some of you may have had enough politics in this post. If that's the case, I encourage you to savour the sax solo in "Echo Beach" in the final video (below). It has absolutely nothing to do with the Vancouver election—and they're a Canadian band!