Destination 270

SMU Students Analyze the 2012 Presidential Election

Cory Booker takes over social media

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In today’s day and age, social media is everything.  Corporations and politicians are scrambling to tap into the millions of Facebook and Twitter users, while young people are continuing to advance social media platforms.  Social media has increased rapidly in popularity due to the fact that we, as people, love community.  Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Youtube- they are all channels for people to connect with and share life with other people.  In this year’s presidential elections, there has been some talk about Romney’s and Obama’s Facebook and Twitter followings, which just goes to show that politicians are really trying to connect with their voters via social media. But there is one politician who has taken over the world of social media- Cory Booker, mayor of Newark, New Jersey.

Cory Booker has over 1.2 million Twitter followers, over 100K likes on Facebook, and over 1.4 million views on Youtube.  In addition, he has recently started up his own social media channel, waywire, which is a video sharing site customized to the user’s interests.  It was created to encourage users to engage and participate in their own discussions about news and information in a personal way.

But what is really unique is that Booker has used Twitter to engage with his constituents personally and invite them to join in his work.  His tweets are used to:

1) Help his constituents address their daily problems:

Call 973 733 4311 Monday MT @MacBoy_Pro: installed new carpet & we need to know how we can dispose of the old carpet. Do u have a solution?

2) Post inspirational quotes:

#waywire ‏@waywire

“don’t let your inability to do everything undermine your determination to do something” http://pinterest.com/pin/161144492887590518/ …#waywire

3) Stump for Barack Obama:

President Obama’s last election debate of his career. Fine job.

4) Publicly respond to criticism:

And you are a fellow American. U have my respect not my mean spirited name calling. RT @fultonrm: u are a idiot

5) And simply chat with his constituents:

Thanks for loaning me your soccer ball. Good Luck at East Side High RT @ReyadHammoud1: Just met Cory Booker

Cory Booker has revolutionized the use of social media to transition from a virtual connection to a real one.  He uses his Twitter to help his constituents in real time and has developed waywire to spur discussion and engagement amongst social media users.  As he sets the stage for politicians in social media, we should watch out for who may follow suit…

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