We founded Plus Three in 2002 with a mission to use web-based technology to promote social change in America. Our experience working for Bigfoot Interactive (now Alliance Data) developing traditional direct response e-marketing programs for Fortune 500 companies provided a model that would change how nonprofit, advocacy, and membership programs are developed and implemented on a national scale.
Our first client, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), hired Plus Three to develop and implement new web-based technology using Open Source software as part of their technology renovation project leading up to the pivotal 2004 election under the direction of Chairman Terry McAuliffe. Plus Three was charged with developing Demzilla and Datamart, the Democratic Party’s first nationwide donor database and voter file, and online systems for website publishing and fundraising. The DNC used this tool to out-raise their Republican counterparts for the first time ever during the 2004 election cycle.
Plus Three was the first company to harness the power of community fundraising for political campaigns. We developed the e-Patriots community fundraising system that allowed bloggers and Netroots activists to raise more than $2 million for the DNC.
In 2004, Plus Three added its second client, John Kerry for President. Our goal? Developing John Kerry for President’s online contribution processing and email systems. By the end of 2004, Plus Three had raised $185 million online through small-dollar donations, helping the Democratic National Committee surpass the Republican National Committee in fundraising for the first time in history.
Plus Three managed the transfer of the John Kerry for President contributions system to the Democratic National Committee during the Democratic National Convention. John Kerry raised $8 million in the 24 hours following his acceptance speech and an additional $12 million during the next 7 days.
Plus Three also began working for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) under the leadership of Jon Corzine. Having raised only $100,000 online between 2003 and April 2004, Plus Three quickly turned around the DSCC's online efforts and raised $2.1 million online in 8 fast months.
In 2005, Plus Three started its expansion into the nonprofit sector. By applying our experience and the best practices we developed in the fast-moving political world to established nonprofit organizations, Plus Three was able to begin the adoption of campaign tactics in the public sector.
We also launched ARCOS, our flagship online marketing software. ARCOS leverages technology that we gained in our acquisition of PRIMEDIA's Internet Resource and Technology Group and that is used by 300 online publications.
We developed ARCOS to let us move from developing custom software for large-scale clients like the DNC and John Kerry for President to offering the same robust email and fundraising tools to smaller organizations.
One of our first projects using ARCOS was to manage the NAACP's Hurricane Katrina emergency response campaign. The NAACP raised over $2.6 million in hurricane relief funds from 5,000 first-time donors online through ARCOS within 10 days of the storm’s devastating landfall on the Gulf coast – a record for the NAACP. We also expanded our work to include a full re-branding and online membership drive that brought 100,000 new members to the organization.
We also expanded our political services to statewide campaigns, working closely with Sen. Bob Menendez's campaign during the Special Election in New Jersey and helping make him the first Latino Senator in the Senate.
During the pivotal mid-term elections, we continued our success with the DSCC under the leadership of Chuck Schumer by growing the DSCC email list to over 2 million members and raising over $12 million online.
We also began our work with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), who in 2004 had raised and spent $1 million online at a time that saw a tremendous expansion of fundraising due to the highly contested Democratic presidential campaign.
Under the leadership of Rahm Emmanuel, Plus Three revitalized the DCCC's online presence with a full redesign of their website, fundraising and marketing strategy, and acquisition planning.
As a result, in 2006 the DCCC raised $7.6 million dollars online, increased its list from 230,000 to 2.1 million email addresses, and successfully orchestrated the best turn around of any committee in the cycle.
In total, we helped poured more than $18 million into combined DSCC and DCCC efforts to take back Congress in 2006 with major campaign victories across the country.
In 2007, we made a concerted effort to further expand our software to better serve nonprofit organizations, including ActionAid, B’nai B’rith Youth Organization (BBYO), Council for a Livable World, Leadership for Educational Equity (the sister organization for alumni of Teach for America), and ServeNext.
We also expanded our suite of community tools with the release of Civitas, an ARCOS add-on that provides in-house blogging and social networking for organizations that want to make their website a hub for discussion and connection. The Sierra Club leveraged Civitas in a New Hampshire campaign to fight global warming.
2008 was a pivotal election year, with Hillary Clinton and the first African American and Hispanic candidates running for President.
We worked on our second presidential campaign, serving as the primary technology provider for John Edwards for President. The campaign raised $14 million dollars online.
We started 2009 with a party, helping the Latino Inaugural Gala 2009 set an online fundraising record for the Hispanic community. In just one month, over $625,000 was raised online. The event raised more than $1 million total.
Plus Three continued its nonprofit focus with the addition to our client list of LULAC, MALDEF, Greater Miami Jewish Federation, and CFED.
In addition, we powered the Sotomayor for Justice online campaign, which helped make Sonia Sotomayor our nation's first Latina Supreme Court Justice.
2010 and Beyond