NC Free Enterprise Foundation published a piece on their website about the growing use of social media in NC politics, campaigns and issues. You can read about it on their site. We love the fact that organizations like this are spreading the word about social media and politics---as we have seen a growing trend over the last few years.
Their analysis focused on social media use by politicians and political candidates. What’s missing from the piece, and we don’t think intentionally, is the growing use of social media from associations, advocacy groups, and grassroots organizations.
On the association front, the NC Association of REALTORS® (NCAR) has been active in social media for several years. When the organization ran the statewide “Stop the Home Tax” issues campaign, NCAR used online components to engage citizens---throughout North Carolina--- in a conversation about the home tax, and how it would be bad for homeowners.
NCAR used YouTube to spread its message, and drive citizens to a website to register for email updates, and contact legislators. Thousands of North Carolinians viewed dozens of videos about the issue on YouTube, and then went to www.ItsABadIdea.org to send a message to legislators. NC Legislators received over 60,000 emails as a result, preventing the statewide adoption of the home tax. All of this occurred in 2007---when YouTube was not even on the minds of most North Carolinians, much less candidates and issues organizations.
Americans for Prosperity North Carolina has done an impressive job taking its offline grassroots power structure and combining it with a strong online presence. The organization has capitalized on the power of email to keep its members engaged and mobilized to take action. Their online website’s content strategy allows activists and others to learn about issues, engage others and take action.
At Cornerstone, we’ve seen not only the increased use of social media in candidate campaigns, but also with organizations, corporations and issues groups. Social media no longer serves as the shiny new tool everyone wants and uses. It is an integral part of an issue or candidate campaign. Most importantly, social media delivers measurable results for campaigns, organizations, and associations.
What organizations have you seen that are using social media as part of their campaigns?