Social Revolution: Part 3 – Politics

Is it just me, or is the world we live in changing at a mind-blowing pace? Call me crazy, but I honestly think that we’re in the midst of what will one day be widely known as the Social Revolution: My parents will never understand it, but for us Millennials, it’s gotten to the point that we want tob e social in every daily activity we engage in.

This is the third part of a series of posts I am going to publish about things we do on a daily basis that are quickly becoming more social than ever before! Click for Part 1 and Part 2 of the Social Revolution Series.

***This is a guest post by Mark Trova. Read more about him at the bottom of the page, and make sure to follow him for great reporting on business and politics.

This just in: Social Media is growing.

Not much of a news flash?

Here’s another one: Social Media is affecting the Republican Primary, and will affect the election between incumbent Barack Obama and whoever wins the primary.

This may not shock anyone, but the extent to which this is true might surprise some.

I would like to start by referencing the last election, between two polar opposite candidates. Barack Obama, the young, hip and liberal thinker, who won the hearts of many by speaking well and presenting himself well, vs. John McCain, the old codger, wily war veteran and conservative thinker, who was unable to win the popular vote of the younger demographic due to (among other reasons), his inability to debate well, his stuffy aura, and one hugely undervalued characteristic:

OBAMA EMBRACED SOCIAL MEDIA AS A VENUE TO WIN SUPPORT, AND MCCAIN DID NOT.

The facts are there. From the 2008 election:

  1. A total of 500 million blogs mentioned Barack Obama from the end of the conventions in August until Election Day. McCain was mentioned only 150 million times.
  2. On MySpace and Twitter, Obama dominated McCain. On MySpace, Obama had 844,927 MySpace friends compared to McCain’s 219,404. That’s approximately 4 times more for Obama than McCain. It was more clear on Twitter — Obama had 118,107 followers, while John McCain’s Twitter account only had 4942 followers in total on election day.
  3. Obama launched a website, change.gov, the day after being elected, a clear nod to the fact that he acknowledged the need to communicate with the people on a personal basis as president in today’s society. It would have been hard to imagine McCain doing the same thing.

Of course, those number are nothing today. Mitt Romney’s twitter page, for example, has 350,000 followers and counting. Ron Paul has 250,000. The Obama Camp’s official Twitter account is now over 12 million strong, and the president himself tweets daily.

There is no guarantee that the person who best uses Social Media will win the election this Fall, but I believe this is the first election that will require successful social media implementation for success. The previous election showed the beginning of the new age in politics — an age that forces politicians to REACT to the people and cater to their needs. Of course, this should surprise no one. Business leaders have used Social Media to market for years now, and being a business that does not use Social Media is to essentially guarantee your demise.

So why does this matter?

Well, think about this. How has business changed since Social Media exploded? Business is conducted very differently than it used to be. Advertising campaigns have been trending more towards online advertising than TV in the past few years, and online advertising is expected to surpass TV advertising in terms of total revenue by 2016. The most telling sign of this trend was in 2011, when Pepsi did NOT run a Super Bowl ad, instead spending that money on several online ads throughout the year.

But how does this relate to politics? Here’s a final thought — Franklin Delano Roosevelt held his fireside chats on the radio in the middle of the Depression in order to better reach the people. By doing this, he was able to reassure the people that the economy was returning and led to his eventual re-election 3 times, for a total of 4 terms. The equivalent of fireside chats today could be twitter chats.

Is your favorite candidate on board?

Mark Trova is a student at The College at Brockport, studying Business. Check out his blog at http://trova101.wordpress.com/ or follow him on Twitter at Mark_Trova

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About Jim Mignano

Jim Mignano is a young professional practicing and learning Public Relations in Rochester, NY. He is passionate about the possibilities that digital media provide and loves utilizing new platforms for a variety of functions. James' blog is about people and the technology they use. It's about communication and persuasion... the old and the new ways of doing things... the struggle between sticking to the tried, true recipes and experimenting with intuitive, innovative ideas. It's an extension and reflection of James himself: the convergence of ambition & ability.
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One Response to Social Revolution: Part 3 – Politics

  1. Pingback: Presidential Election? We have an app for that! « trova101

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