In 2008, Barack Obama and Howard Dean were responsible for turning the way politicians win elections completely upside down by utilizing new media to advertise, bringing a new generation of voters to the polls.
Fast forward to 2012, and new media is working for Ron Paul and Rick Santorum. Both candidates have spent nearly nothing on traditional media advertising and are looking like they will secure two of the top three spots in Iowa tonight.
“With social media, they don’t need to raise a lot of money,” filmmaker and producer Stephen Bannon says.
And he’s right. With social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, campaigns can communicate directly with voters, while new media platforms and the blogosphere provide them with new and exciting angles the mainstream media doesn’t bother to bringing up.
“People who are interested in this go to the blogging community first because they really want to know what the real story is,” Bannon said. “It’s the strong points of view backed up with great writing.”
People in the blogosphere are out breaking stories everyday. Talk radio hosts plan entire shows based on blog content and major news outlets like CNN and Fox News rely on blogs for fresh perspectives, story ideas and content.
In Des Moines, Google realizes the benefit of merging all forms of media: print, online, new media, mainstream and has set up a media center where the results of the caucuses will come in later.