This election season social media is driving much of the conversation – whether real-time online fact checking during the GOP convention speeches or fast and furious responses to statements made on a candidate’s website: the online community crowd-sources responses and the candidates have trouble controlling the message.
This should not come as a surprise to either campaign camp: Engagement on social media channels has soared since Obama’s successful 2008 online strategy helped him encourage more young voters to turn up on election day. Especially the use of Twitter has doubled within one year from 2011 to 2012.
A recent Nielsen study showed that in parallel to the rising numbers of social media users, TV cable subscription numbers are going down. As a matter of fact, “cord cutters” are moving toward broadband and TV bundles and are watching TV content online on Hulu, Netflix or directly on a network’s homepage:
The campaigns are therefore focusing their strategy on online – instead of spending their budget on TV ads. Here is where the Super PAC spending comes in – swing states will still see a lot of TV ads, paid for by Super PACs instead of solely the candidates themselves.
The GOP convention was labelled the “Convention Without Walls“, highlighting new campaign channels, such as YouTube’s Politics channel, Twitter’s Election Index, or Facebook.
The Romney campaign was the first political campaign to buy the trending topic #RomneyRyan2012 and sponsored tweets on Twitter (via Mashable):
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