The 2012 campaign is on.
Barack Obama, decked with a 2012 Twitter profile image, is getting more personal with the social networking platform. His staff recently announced that the Twitter world can expect to hear from Obama regularly. When he Tweets, he will always sign it with -BO.
Obama's first BO tweet was:
Being a father is sometimes my hardest but always my most rewarding job. Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. -BO
Nothing spectacular, but it was covered by the media nonetheless.
One goal of the Twitter account is undoubtedly to grab media attention, which it accomplished on Father's Day.
Another is keeping a pulse on the public. Obama's staffers said they want to use Twitter to ask for feedback, ideas, and stories. It even promised to retweet followers every now and then. If Obama is personally tweeting, it makes his followers more engaged and the information gathering task easier.
Perhaps most importantly, Twitter allows Obama to add a personal touch to inspire devotion among his young campaigners. Twitter is a good way to reach them because many are one of the 9 million users who follow his account.
In 2008, one of the keys to Obama's success was reaching young people, which he did successfully through email, Facebook, original websites, and online advertising. As a result, he received the highest percentage of under 25-years-old votes since exit polling began in 1976, according to US News.
So far, with the exception of Ron Paul, none of the Republican candidates look to be very popular with young people, especially Mitt Romney, the frontrunner.
An engaged Facebook and Twitter strategy, therefore, could allow Obama to once again dominate this demographic group come 2012.