Innovation is Coming to the Beltway
News flash—Washington is slow to adapt to change. Ronald Reagan famously quipped, “It’s been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned it bears a striking resemblance to the first.” Take that for what it is, but the idea of people influencing other people hasn’t changed in thousands of years. In Washington, some good connections, sturdy shoes and a healthy PAC is still the formula for a solid government affairs strategy. We’re not saying grit and money still don’t get you places- but while the rest of the world has changed how they communicate, influence, and share information—Washington relationships are still based on handshakes.
Times have changed. Late last year, the Harvard Business Review published an article “Lobbying Is Not Enough to Build Influence Among U.S. Lawmakers.” The article notes that a Washington brand needs to include more than just a good rolodex. The Beltway crowd has been slow to adapt to a social media driven professional culture. Connections are made on LinkedIn, elections are won on Facebook, and news breaks on Twitter (see, Trump, Donald).
With all the money being spent on Washington strategies, it’s shocking that these sophisticated operations haven’t fully leveraged the powerful utility of social data. You have witnessed entire industries disrupted by viral YouTube videos and multinational brands instantly destroyed (or born) because of a hot meme. Once a strategy, social media is now the foundation of successful campaigns and businesses.
The Washington Old Guard still struts around the capital with a copy of Politico tucked under their arm while younger staff on the Hill are reading it on their smartphone. Actually, 70% of people with a smartphone check it every 5 minutes on average a day. Almost 90% of people under the age of 40 check their phones within 5 minutes of waking up in the morning. From our prospective, the most interesting relationship in DC is the one you have with your mobile device.
At SociallyMined we are committed to helping organizations build their Washington brands by leveraging the power of social media to deliver tangible results. We use technology designed for Fortune 500 brands to develop strategies that optimize your engagement through different platforms and provide you the data-edge you need to achieve your policy goals. We spend money on technology—not fancy office space to provide you the most efficient campaign possible that is easy to understand and see results. We won’t even say anything if you still want to tuck that Roll Call under your arm.