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Twitter Tips for Political Campaigns

We often get asked by clients, “What’s the best strategy for using Twitter in a political campaign?”

Twitter can be part of an effective online strategy for campaigns because it is the place to talk to the world. Reporters and bloggers use Twitter to track breaking news and gossip. Remember, an effective organization nurtures their networks and seizes the advantage. Twitter is a unique social network and lots of fun.

Here’s some things to keep in mind as you tweet, retweet, follow, mention, hashtag…

  • Claim your username on Twitter before someone else does. Don’t add a date or campaign position (@johnsmith2012) or once the election is over your account will be dated.
  • Have a current photo and bio.
  • You can auto feed your Facebook posts to Twitter, but don’t forget Twitter’s 140 character limit. (But don't auto feed Twitter to Facebook!)
  • It’s better to join an existing #hashtag conversation then trying to start a new one. But stay on topic and don't spam the conversation.
  • Twitter is a great tool for real-time reaction at events. It's ok to have a big surge of tweets focused on an event. When it's over, use Storify to assemble all those tweets into a coherent story - with reaction tweets from others, interspersed commentary, videos and photos, and more.
  • Follow people who you want to follow you.
  • Your followers are potential voters of all ages. Interact with them, retweet and encourage them to retweet your posts. Tweet a thank you to followers who donate to your campaign.
  • Use Twitter search to track mentions of your name, the issues, and anything else relevant to your campaign.
  • Don’t forget you have a Twitter account. Use it! It’s great for small bites of info.
  • Keep tweeting, even after the campaign is over.

Remember Twitter is not a replacement for traditional communication tools. So keep on sending emails, mailings, shake hands and make phone calls!

Check out recent data on the Twitter habits of U.S. House members and Senators here.

Posted on April 2, 2012 in