This is not a political post, but rather a post about social media and politics. There is no denying the powerful role social media plays (and has played) in our political system.
Brand managers have long applauded the value of social media – the opportunity to speak directly to consumers. Large budgets are allocated, staffs are hired, monitoring services are employed, all in an attempt to keep tabs on what is being said and shared on social media.
President Barack Obama’s campaign was the first to truly engage voters online. The strategy was appealing to many and his victory demonstrated that social media can work in elections. This past presidential election cycle leaves no doubt that this is the case.
But with all its benefits, social media can stir the pot, creating “crises” simply because of who sends out the tweet or shares to Facebook.
In his farewell speech to the nation, President Obama issued a warning about social media. “For too many of us, it’s become safer to retreat into our own bubbles, whether in our neighborhoods or college campuses or places of worship or our social media feeds, surrounded by people who look like us and share the same political outlook and never challenge our assumptions.”
President Donald Trump, who’s as Twitter-savvy as they come, can make or break an organization simply because he sends out one of his famous early morning tweets. Communications professionals have been discussing what to do if Mr. Trump tweets about your organization or client. Here are couple blog posts to consider, one from Shel Holtz, another from Heather Whaling.
Social media is not going away. I wouldn’t want it to. I love the connections, the information-sharing and, yes, even the challenges that come along with it. Time will tell how this administration will use social media, if Mr. Trump will still have access to his account or whether he’ll relinquish that control to the communications team. Whatever the decision, social media will give us access to POTUS in a new way. And as Mr. Trump is sworn-in today, I, like so many others, will be watching the feeds closely.
Vice President/General Manager
Abbie has been doing public relations her whole life…from organizing a picket line in 6th grade to organizing client communications today. She’s passionate about a lot of things, you’ll see.
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