Hillary Clinton
Hillary Rodham Clinton, who recently announced her intent to run for the U.S. Presidency (Photo by Danny Johnston, Associated Press)

by Christine Urio

Hillary Clinton has started her presidential game strong by announcing that she would be a 2016 candidate via social media.

Instead of making the traditional announcement with the wife, or in this case husband, and kids on stage, she issued a tweet in under 100 characters stating her interest to run.

In the tweet shared by NBC, Clinton said, “I’m running for president. Everyday Americans need a champion. And I want to be that champion. –H.”

By using social media to officially announce her candidacy, Clinton has reached out to the American population in a new and innovative way.

Wherever we turn, we cannot escape consistent status updates or photo uploads which seep into everyday conversation.

By using sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, Clinton has immediately made herself a prominent topic of conversation that cannot be ignored.

According to NBC, “Most public figures spend years building their social media profile. But just 12 hours after setting up her first Facebook page on Sunday, Hillary Clinton had stormed to 600,000 likes and more than 1.8 million video views.”

Joining the presidential conversation after her Republican opponents Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, she has already surpassed Paul in Facebook likes.

While this may seemingly reduce the presidential race to a popularity contest, these are not superficial statistics, for it shows the support Clinton is receiving and acknowledges that her statement is being successfully broadcasted to the world.

Clinton’s use of social media also humanizes her.

According to the Huffington Post, she recently tweeted, “Road trip! Loaded the van & set off for IA. Met a great family when we stopped this afternoon. Many more to come. –H,” along with a photo.

By sharing aspects of her daily life, Clinton is portraying herself as a normal person and relates to the average American citizen. Although she has high ambitions to govern the nation, it does not mean she does not snap photos and update locations like the rest of us.

Clinton did not leave an aspect of social media untouched, for she even posted a two-minute video on YouTube titled “Getting Started.”

According to Cnet, “In the short promo, several people announce personal resolutions they are getting ready for, which range from growing tomatoes to applying for jobs. Clinton appears near the end to say she is “getting ready to do something too,” and declares, “I’m running for president.””

“Getting Started,” Hillary Clinton’s announcement video to kick off her campaign. (Video courtesy of Hillary for America)

By using a broad base of social media and incorporating video into her campaign, Clinton is able to reach a wider audience.

“The video has already garnered more than 2,000 comments, and her YouTube channel has racked up a bit over 5,700 subscribers. On her Facebook account the same video was posted and has collected more than 607,000 views and 20,000 shares,” Cnet stated.

With over 3.25 million followers on Twitter, Clinton has easily managed to reach a large population with just the click of a button.

With televised and even radio broadcasted announcements, people need to be stationary in their home at a designated time in order to receive the information live.  With social media, it makes the information more convenient to the user—and if something makes our lives easier, we are more likely to be appreciative and receptive to it.

Another advantage of using social media is that it can be easily shared to thousands of other people on different platforms. Like with online articles, there are typically buttons to share or link videos and statuses which further promotes the information.

Clinton’s use of social media proves that she is up-to-date with the times and is not afraid to learn how aspects of daily life have changed and things like technology work in a modern world. This has also inadvertently connected with a younger audience, welcoming them into a national conversation.

Through this announcement, Clinton has shown us that she is willing to risk using unconventional methods to best reach her goals, which will be an interesting tactic to see applied to the presidential game.