Thought Leadership

Social Advocacy

Social Media is a powerful force that redefines influence and opens the door to new relationship pathways.  And for the first time ever, organizations – and individuals – can use these new tools both to influence public opinion… or wield a scary new weapon.

Social Advocacy

Using the Social Web to influence policy and make change.

By Randall Craig

Education, consensus-building, civil disobedience, lobbying, and creating change.  All possible with Social Media.

Associations, causes, corporations, and even individuals have begun using Social Media, but achieving advocacy goals seems more like experimentation than strategy.  How can these new tools amplify existing experience – and relationships?

One of the more fundamental shifts caused by social media is in the area of advocacy. Looking through recent history, this shift is more like a pendulum.

In the era of WWII “command and control”, power was centralized, and effecting change was a question of who you knew.

The grassroots activism of the 1960’s galvanized and empowered an entire generation. Entire movements were born, anti-war, women’s rights, and environmentalists to name a few. These often-loosely organized groups got the attention – and influenced policy – precisely because of their broad reach and street muscle.

Teenagers grow up, and these groups also matured. They recognized that funding research, building stakeholder concessions, and developing relationships with policymakers was a far more effective way to influence policy, especially with limited resources.

In today’s age of citizen journalism, self-publishing, crowd-sourcing, and social media, for the first time in history, individuals have a zero-cost public voice. The scarce resource of influence is now available to everyone.

The obvious question is how can the social web be used to further your organization’s advocacy goals.
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