At the Huffington Post, David Meerman Scott writes of the Massachusetts race:
GOP members of Congress have more than twice as many Twitter followers than their Democratic counterparts and tweet five times more often. Minority Leader John Boehner may look like a character from Mad Men, but the Don Draper of the House has a “director of new media” and more than 30,000 Facebook fans – almost four times as many as Nancy Pelosi.
Look at the Massachusetts Senate race, where Republican insurgent Scott Brown is using the same technologies Obama once did to mount a campaign that might derail the president’s domestic agenda.
Using tweets, text messages and e-mails, Brown raised $1.3 million online in one day and brought together an overflow rally to compete with the president’s stump speech for Democrat Martha Coakley.
Politics and platforms and personal connections are important. But didn't Obama for America teach us that the Web has the power to push a candidate over the top? Obama also showed the importance of young people (whose communications of choice is digital).
Let's look at a few numbers. As I compare the morning before election day, @MarthaCoakley has 3,520 Twitter followers compared to @ScottBrownMA with 10,214 followers. Coakley counts 14,487 Facebook fans to Brown's 76,700 fans. Advantage Brown by more than three to one.
Scott attended the Obama rally for Coakley at Northeastern University. He noticed something missing:
How do college students communicate? Facebook and SMS of course! Yet these two forms of communications played absolutely no formal part in the rally. The brochure that was handed out had no web addresses or social media sites. At the rally, Coakley fans were asked to vote. They were asked to volunteer at phone banks. They were asked to talk to neighbors and friends.
But were the many college students in the crowd told to talk up the Coakley campaign on Facebook, the college student communications tool of choice? No. Were people at the rally asked to tweet? No. Were they asked to join Coakley's fan page? No.