Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Social Media Political Trends to Watch in 2014

It's a given that social media will play a role in 2014 politics, but new apps, new players and new trends are already changing the social game learned in 2012. A Social Media Today post by Jane Susskind, of IVN News, lays out some predictions to help guide campaigns' social media planning. While Facebook and Twitter dominated political campaigning in 2012, watch for Google Plus to take a bigger role this year, she predicts. Not only is Google Plus now the second largest social network in the world, it will be running Google Plus ads on the Google Display Network, which includes over 2 million sites, making it more appealing for political ads. Those chasing the youth vote turned to Facebook in 2012, but recent studies show that young adults are leaving Facebook for social networks such as Instagram and Vine, Susskind reports. No wonder trendsetters Sen. Cory Booker and Gov. Chris Christie have been showcasing their expertise on Instagram. Clearly, pictures will matter as much or more than words in 2014 social media. Posts that include photo albums receive 180% more engagement than the average post, and Barack Obama's most popular tweet was a photo of him with Michelle, notes Susskind. So campaign strategists should start coming up with visual impact as well as slogans. That includes videos, especially micro-videos. Twitter’s Vine and Facebook’s Instagram, both limiting videos to 15 seconds or under, are examples of networks that could be used by politicians for quick, real-time connections, as opposed to long-form TV ads. And some social media vehicles that worked well in 2012 will work even better in 2014, predicts Susskind. Take Twitter as an example. As of November 2013, one in 10 Americans got their news from Twitter, she points out, and Twitter continues to offer politicians a way to get the word out, react quickly to events and attacks, and generate real-time response from a growing crowd of followers. For the complete post, go to http://socialmediatoday.com/jane-susskind/2030916/5-ways-social-media-will-change-political-campaigns-2014

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