I recently read two(link1, link2) articles that trashed the JohnEdwards.com site for being on 24 Social Networking Sites.
"I get it. The Edwards campaign is really into the whole Web 2.0 thing. Message delivered. I understand the power of these networks. I do. But 24 accounts? This just strikes me as sort of ridiculous.
More importantly, I just don't think it is good strategy."(bivingsreport)
I have to completely disagree. I think its a great strategy and probably the most connected Candidate on the Internet. It's what you have to do when your the underdog. You have to pull out all the stops.
As for the criticizm that the Edwards homepage is to busy and has to much text, I can go either way. For the younger supporters who grew up visiting sites like http://absolutepunk.net & http://punknews.org/ the Edwards site is fine. For the older crowd (like my parents or older siblings) a site like Edwards would be very confusing.
It might seem confusing or overbearing for both Todd Zeigler and Patrick Ruffini but they're also not the demographics that the Edwards campaign is targeting by being on those 24 sites. For the 18 to 25 year olds who live on these social networks its a familiar scene that they can relate to. Whether they join on all 24 networks or not, just seeing that you speak their language gives you alot of credability.
As for My.BarackObama.com, I think creating your own Social Network is a huge mistake. Whats worse about preaching to the choir is locking up the choir in a house so no one can hear you. So you take 50,000 hardcore Obama fans and lock em up on a website, that's not really going to help convert others. I would rather have those 50,000 on Myspace creating the largest Obama Myspace group and inviting their friends to join. Being out on the social networking world also makes it more likely that strangers will stumble across your profile or group and join the conversation. Luckily for the Obama campaign the grassroots supporters have been building up the various profiles & groups across the networks.
Personally I think other Campaign sites(like HillaryClinton.com) could learn a thing or two from Edwards.
|Democratic Candidates||Republican Candidates|
|Barack Obama||61663||Ron Paul||3718|
|Hillary Clinton||27981||Mitt Romney||2083|
|John Edwards||12256||Rudy Giuliani||1379|
|Dennis Kucinich||2627||Tom Tancredo||1158|
|Bill Richardson||1403||Sam Brownback||832|
|Joseph Biden||622||Mike Huckabee||629|