June 12, 2008 |
Though the 2008 presidential election has already reach historic proportions with both women and minorities being represented in the tight Democratic primary, this election has signified a shift in the way candidates go about fundraising and targeting potential constituents. Many political experts are attributing Barack Obama’s achievement of the Democratic nomination to his internet campaign, and believe that Obama’s skillful use of social tools, social networks and his own website could be the key to defeating John McCain in the presidential race.
Regardless of whether Obama wins the presidency, he is setting the bar for future politicians in the way he has fine-tuned his campaign to utilize the newest social tools on the internet to build his own popularity. He has a huge following on Facebook and MySpace, the two most popular social networks, which is largely comprised of college students. Many believe that the young person vote will be a serious factor in deciding the outcome of the 2008 presidential race, and Barack’s social involvement and goals for higher education have won the support of many college students.
Obama is also very active on Twitter. Though Twitter doesn’t have a community near the sizes of MySpace or Facebook, the members of the Twitter community represent another critical demographic: the who’s who of internet technology and media. Obama might be the first presidential candidate to recognize that the best way to win the support of the internet community isn’t to spout rhetoric or avoid it – the key is to get involved. With the presence of the internet and social media growing at a fast rate, politicians can no longer afford to sidestep the real issues surrounding the internet and technology.
The Democratic presidential candidate also prepared a fantastic website prior to beginning his campaign. Obama’s website has been a hub for centralizing campaign involvement, as supporters can make donations, help make phone calls, organize events and volunteer all from the main page. If you’re a huge Obama fan, you can even download free Obama ringtones and wallpapers to satiate your political appetite. Curious visitors can learn about Obama’s politics, view videos of his speeches and join his email list.
With the votes of college students as well as internet and social media figures behind him, Obama is well on his way to winning the presidency. Though many political consultants are saying that the deciding factor will be which candidate can secure the demographics that Hillary Clinton controlled, Barack Obama is already a step ahead of McCain, better prepared to win those groups and in a solid position to become the next president.