They arrived at the Democratic Campaign headquarters on Miracle Mile where Mayor Ann Johnston, City Councilmember Susan Eggman, Assemblymember Allyson Huber, city council candidate Michael Tubbs and even Congressman Jerry McNerney were in attendance.
The headquarters was buzzing with volunteers, campaign managers, staff and visitors as everyone took photos, posted on Facebook and sent a few tweets off to their loyal followers. So did social media play a big role in these local elections?
Nicholas Hatten, Campaign Manager for Mr. Tubbs said it clearly: “Oh hell yeah. I was shocked how effective it was.” They used Facebook and Twitter (@michaeldtubbs) primarily to encourage donations, campaign walks and fundraising events.
There is a difference between a Facebook Profile and a Page. Michael maintains his Facebook profile postings while Lange Luntao, Communications Coordinator, primarily maintains the Tubbs Facebook Page and adds postings to his Profile as needed. The social media approach to the campaign was more effective with their younger audience such as those that are Mr. Tubbs’ age. It appears to be partially generational.
What worked well for Mr. Tubbs? “Michael was very good at quoting scriptures and telling stories to engage his friends and followers,” Mr. Hatten said. “In addition, we used email and Envite to follow up on our social media communications.”
Joel Reyna Jr., Fundraising Manager for the Eggman campaign, shared that social media helped the campaign tremendously. “We primarily used Facebook and Twitter to gather walkers and to connect with the candidate. “
Christian Burkin, Eggman’s Campaign Manager, said, “The Facebook pages were most effective with the organizing events in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Long Beach. We did not have as much of a response locally but it partially due to the fact that the social media used locally was for volunteers to help with phone banking, precinct walking and it required work. The big city events were more fun and did not require as much work and naturally received a better response.”
Susan Eggman makes personal postings daily on her Facebook Profile and Page to engage with family and friends. She also tweets to her dedicated followers about upcoming campaign and city events. “Have you ever heard of Andrew Pinasco, a local plumber in Stockton?” she asked. “He is one of the best in his industry using Twitter and he said our campaign and Tubbs’ campaign are the two best at using Twitter .”
I recall another celebraty plumber in 2008, and Mr. Pinasco, is correct in 2012. Regardless of your political party, those using social media to brand their political campaigns or businesses are making a bigger and wider impact locally.
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