An observational perspective by Mike Kirkwood | 16 May 2017
What a world we live in! At no time in history have we been more connected. By virtue of its nature new media is social, communicative, entertaining and downright interesting. One only needs to observe international politics within the last 5 years to see the effective deployment and use social media as valuable tool for engagement, communication, and consistent messaging. This tactic makes total sense to digital marketers who understand that it is imperative to:
- Reach the right people
- At the right time
- With the right message
This means communicating with prospects within the channels that prospects propagate, with persuasive and timely communications. The current US Presidents utilisation of Twitter pre-and post-election has been well documented. For instance, the issue of immigration which centred around the infamous wall. The issue was extremely controversial, grabbed attention and was well publicised. We may not agree with the policy, but many did. The Wall was a major selling point on the campaign trail, playing on fear and nationalism to elicit responses. Many brought-in to the idea and others were outraged, the debate still rages.
Another observation of interest is the flagrant disregard for transparency and truth within the spin. Social media allows people to make statements of opinion which many take as fact or are heavily influenced. This is the beauty and danger of social media and large scale social influence. Those in power have a moral obligation to ensure the information they amplify is accurate, truthful, and transparent. This should be especially true within politics.
The benefits of such access and engagement are plentiful, however, so are the risks if information shared is not accurate and hastily deployed. Recent accusations by the current US president regarding the former Barack Obama of an act that could have gotten the past president impeached have recently cropped up. This is not your ordinary exercise of free speech. If the accusation were true, and President Barack Obama ordered a warrantless wiretap of Donald Trump during the campaign, the scandal would be of Watergate-level proportions, possibly marring then president Obama’s term in office. However, if the allegations are false and unsupported by actual evidence, which at this stage is likely, that too should be a scandal on a major scale. This kind of accusation has the potential to get the current president impeached under federal law.
The outcome of this latest potential scandal is yet to be written, yet I’m sure we will all receive a Tweet or re-Tweet to let us know. In all, this short piece
is a personal observation that draws attention to credibility. Don’t always believe what you initially see and hear. Do your research, triangulate your findings with other credible data. Be wary of those on social media with an obvious agenda, ask questions and seek truth.
One has to wonder what the future holds for Twitter and other social media platforms as political mouthpieces. The media has become fragmented, difficult environment to navigate. What will be said next, who will say what? What will happen? These are all entertaining questions that drive the attention economy.