What does a Barack Obama campaign strategist have to do with the International Year of Co-operatives? He can talk to co-operators about the importance of using social media to promote co-ops and the International Year.
That’s why the ICA invited Sam Graham-Felsen, who masterminded Obama’s social media efforts during the U.S. presidential campaign, to give the keynote speech at this morning’s session.
In an engaging presentation, the 30-year-old Graham-Felsen gave numerous examples of how social media was used to mobilize people to support Obama during the campaign. It was a monumental effort: the campaign posted some 2,000 videos on YouTube; they got so many hits that a total of one billion minutes of web video content from the Obama campaign were consumed. Many of the videos didn’t even include shots of Obama — instead, they included ordinary people talking about why they supported Obama, people holding up signs bearing the two key messages of the campaign: “Hope” and “Change”.