We are in the throes of a heated Presidential election that is nearing a close in exactly one week. We will have more to celebrate or complain about once the election is final, depending on which side of the fence you are on! Either way it goes, we will make history with our collective decision. We as a country are also making history of different kind, as this is the first time the White House will be turning over not only the Oval Office and all that goes with it, the White House will also need to transition all social media accounts to the new administration. This is the first time in our history that we will need to deal with a social media transition in our White House! Doesn’t that seem crazy? So much can happen in 8 years. Obama’s administration was the first to have a Twitter handle, first to join Facebook, Flickr, Vimeo, iTunes and even MySpace. When it comes to the social media transition, it should be interesting to see how it all shakes out.
Here is what we know
According to the Whitehouse.gov blog page (yes, they have a blog in case you didn’t know) there are accounts on Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Tumbler, Medium, Flickr and more. Just about every social channel out there has an account dedicated to the President, the White House, other offices or all of the above. As part of the social media transition, all the content in these accounts will be preserved and archived with NARA (National Archives and Records Administration). Don’t you wonder what people will think of all this content in 100 years? Beginning on January 20th, 2017, the accounts will be turned over to the new administration, the fans and followers will be retained, however the content will be wiped clean (and preserved as mentioned above). For example, the Presidential Twitter handle, @POTUS will go to the 45th President. All content will then be moved to @POTUS44. The same will go for other handles like @WhiteHouse, @FLOTUS, @PressSec and @VP.
Here is what we can learn
As a digital marketer very involved in social media on a much smaller scale, the White House’s handling of the various social platforms over the last 8 years as well as the social media transition that will soon be necessary, I find this all very fascinating and educational. Here are the top 3 takeaways for me:
Use the channels appropriate to your audience
For the White House, the demographics are anyone old enough to vote. Our 44th President along with his entire administration used social media and all its channels appropriately to reach the right audience. While being on every social channel might not be appropriate for you and your business, it’s important to know which demographics you are trying to reach and which social media channels match up with those demos.
Using the newest digital platforms keeps you relevant
When it comes to being the leader of the free world, it’s important to stay current and connected. Without the regular content posted on the newest and various social media channels, the White House would have quickly lost touch with the majority of its citizens and voters. Compare this to your business. Are you staying relevant with your core audience or target customer? What are you doing to connect with customers or potential customers on social media? Too many businesses aren’t leveraging the huge opportunities to be had on social, and are being left in the proverbial dust as a result.
Make sure the right people have access to your social accounts
Clearly the White House has a plan. If all goes well, there will be a smooth transition when #45 takes over. Too often this is not the case in business. If I’ve seen it once, I’ve seen it a million times. Businesses have multiple accounts on Facebook, Twitter or any number of other channels, that were set up by an old employee, no one has passwords or logins. Or they have no idea how to login to their official business pages. As a result, customers and fans are confused when writing reviews, checking in or even getting basic information. Get your social accounts cleaned up, remove duplicate accounts and make sure whomever is in charge has the main logins for all social media accounts.
Let’s all be on the lookout in January for a smooth social media transition for our next President. And pay attention to the ways in which you get information about this election and the new President. You might learn how to apply some of the techniques and methods to your own business. If the leader of the free world is doing it, wouldn’t be worth a look for your own company?
Need help with a social strategy or transition of your own? Please contact us for a free evaluation of your social accounts.
Also published on Medium.