I recently came upon a blog article from the New York Times, that discusses a new digital campaign technique being utilized by the campaign for Republican presidential hopeful, Herman Cain.
After the recent sexual harassment scandal involving Herman Cain, his campaign team used a new way of drawing bad press away from the Republican candidate. The Cain campaign purchased ad space from Google to help dispel the allegations.
Just by searching for “herman cain” or “herman cain scandal”, a Google user is greeted by two sponsored websites in support of Herman Cain. This is an interesting and good strategic move by the Cain campaign. It’s easy to tell that the links are provided by the Cain campaign, but it accomplishes its task by planting an opposing idea in your head. This article also brings up a good point on how our news is being dispersed.
Political campaigns, and business campaigns to a certain extent, no longer have to go through the typical channels of media to access the public. Typically, a candidate when faced with accusations such as these, would have to make a public appearance to dispel the rumors and the allegations. With the advent of social media and the internet; multiple channels have opened for a candidate can express his or her opinions on.
The New York Times blog also details Cain’s campaign team utilizing Twitter to reach the public. By searching for Herman Cain on Twitter, members are directed to a tweet from Herman Cain that references a Washington Post article detailing Cain’s response to the harassment allegations.
By utilizing social media, politicians have opened up new ground to spread their message. Many believe Barack Obama’s popularity in his presidential campaign was due to the extensive use of social media; specifically Facebook. The interesting thing about this story is that many companies aren’t quite sure yet how social media fits into their business plan. Political campaigns though, appear to have discovered an excellent way of utilizing social media.