Center for Campaign Innovation



Alexandria, VA

Tax-Exempt Status:



Think Tank


Eric Wilson

Contact InfluenceWatch with suggested edits or tips for additional profiles.

The Center for Campaign Innovation is a think tank that researches digital communications strategies for right-of-center political candidates and elected officials. The organization also lobbies politicians to adopt its strategies. 1 The center’s founder, Eric Wilson, also holds senior positions with the Bullpen Strategy Group, a public relations firm, and its affiliate, the Bullpen Technology Group. 2 3 Both companies cater to conservative and Republican political candidates and organizations. 4 5

Wilson has argued that the Republican Party should support ranked choice voting, and the center has published research that claims to demonstrate that the approach results in more “positive” primary election campaigns with less attack advertising against other candidates, which voters allegedly prefer. 6 7


In January 2021, the Center for Campaign Innovation published a statement arguing that social media, especially Facebook, was partially responsible for drastically increasing local-level attention to national issues, and that this effect was pushing national candidates to spend large amounts of money in states that they had no realistic chance of winning. 8

In August 2022, the center published a report arguing that 70 percent of Republican campaigns in that year’s midterm elections had fallen short of their fundraising goals. The report considered multiple factors, such as inflation and apparent suppression of conservatives by tech platforms, but particularly emphasized the disproportionate influence of major players such as the political action committee of former President Donald Trump. According to the report, the Trump operation and other large national campaigns consumed a large portion of voter attention and funds through highly aggressive email campaigns, leaving little for other causes and candidates. The New York Times featured findings from the report in its coverage of Republican online fundraising. 9

In January 2023, the center published a report which revealed that Facebook remained the number one digital channel for Republican fundraising despite the platform’s alleged selective targeting of political activity. The report also cited evidence of apparent voter burnout from repetitive fundraising emails. 10

In February 2023, the center published a report offering solutions to the apparent low quality of Republican candidates in the previous year’s midterm elections. According to the center’s polling, just over 50 percent of Republicans had voted for their candidate mainly for their perceived merits and not simply to oppose the other party, compared to nearly 70 percent of Democrats who said they had voted more for their candidate than against the opponent. The center suggested that crowded and contentious Republican primary elections were a major factor in turning off voters, and proposed ranked choice voting as a way to increase the chance of a moderate “consensus” candidate winning. 11


Eric Wilson is the founder and head of the Center for Campaign Innovation. 12 He is also a senior vice president at Bullpen Strategy and the senior vice president for strategy at Bullpen Technology. He ran the digital engagement team on the 2016 presidential campaign of Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and was the digital director for former Republican Party operative Ed Gillespie’s 2014 Senate campaign and 2017 Virginia gubernatorial campaign. In addition, he has provided advisory services to the center-right Liberal Party of Australia. While Wilson works exclusively with conservative politicians, he is also a fellow with Harvard University’s Ash Center for Technology and Democracy. 13


  1. “About.” Center for Campaign Innovation. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  2. Eric Wilson. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  3. “Eric Wilson.” Bullpen Strategy. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  4. “Republican National Cmte Expenditures.” OpenSecrets. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  5. “National Republican Senatorial Cmte Expenditures.” OpenSecrets. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  6. Eric Wilson. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  7. “Measuring The Effects Of Ranked Choice Voting In Republican Primaries.” Center for Campaign Innovation. August 2, 2022. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  8. “How Facebook Turned ‘All Politics is Local’ into ‘All Politics is National.’” Center for Campaign Innovation. January 19, 2021. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  9. “New York Times Features Latest Fundraising Research From Campaign Innovation.” Center for Campaign Innovation. August 31, 2022. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  10. Sean J. Miller. “Report: Fundraising Ad Targeting an Issue as Facebook Remains Top Platform to Reach Donors.” Campaigns & Elections. January 18, 2023. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  11. “What Should Republicans Do To Improve Candidate Quality?” Center for Campaign Innovation. February 7, 2023. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  12. Eric Wilson. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  13. “Eric Wilson.” Bullpen Strategy. Accessed February 12, 2023.
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Center for Campaign Innovation

320 South Henry Street
Alexandria, VA