How to Use Social Media as a Female Legislator


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This is a presentation that I developed for the National Foundation for Women Legislators. The goal is for their members to be able to use social media to engage their constituents, manage their personal brands and extend their campaigns.

Based on my work in the private and public sector, as well as personal projects and volunteer work, this is a collection of "best practices," stats and "big ideas" for how to use social media as an elected female (and, of course, these lessons apply more broadly as well).

Girl power!

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How to Use Social Media as a Female Legislator

  1. 1. Prepared for: National Foundation for Women Legislators Washington, DC | October 29, 2009 Developed by: Leslie Bradshaw Director of Engagement | New Media Strategies 5 Ways to Use Social Media to: Engage Your Constituents Own Your Personal Brand Extend Your Campaign
  2. 2. #1: Social Mobilization + Micro-Donations
  3. 3. URLs you’ll need: What Obama Did What You Can Do
  4. 4. #2: Establish Your Own Byline
  5. 5. Content Credit: William Beutler Regional Target your constituents by writing a diary or guest post for a localized outlet
  6. 6. Left of Center Right of Center URLs you’ll need: URLs you’ll need: Rally your base by maintaining a diary and establishing relationships with site editors
  7. 7. #3: Engage Women
  8. 8. Social Media Skews Female Content Credit:; Media Post; eMarketer
  9. 9. Harvard Says: “Women Are the WORLD’s Largest Opportunity” $13T 2009 $18T 2014 $4.4T 2009 $6.6T 2014 Content Credit: Harvard Business Review, September 2009 $1.2T 2009 $1.8T 2014 Global Female Income China’s GDP India’s GDP FACT: Women have more purchasing power than combining and doubling the GDPs of China and India.
  10. 10. National Regional Left of Center Right of Center URL you’ll need: URLs you’ll need: Top 100: URLs you’ll need: URLs you’ll need:
  11. 11. #4: SEO / SMO
  12. 12. Your Website Social Media Profiles How Search Engines Rank Content <ul><li>Determining Factors: </li></ul><ul><li>Credibility of site </li></ul><ul><li>Longevity of site / profile </li></ul><ul><li>Relevancy of content </li></ul><ul><li>Frequency of posting </li></ul><ul><li>Titling and tagging of content </li></ul><ul><li>Inbound links to the site </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>My Brand: /LeslieBradshaw </li></ul><ul><li>LinkedIn </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>Mahalo </li></ul><ul><li>Blog: </li></ul><ul><li>Previous Branding: /LeslieAnn44 </li></ul><ul><li>YouTube </li></ul><ul><li>Flickr </li></ul><ul><li>FriendFeed </li></ul><ul><li>SlideShare </li></ul><ul><li>Gmail </li></ul>Be Consistent, Be Present and Optimize Recommended Profiles: Summary & Specialties Groups 500+ Connections Recommendations Thought Leader Blog Posts (tag: “linkedin”) Consistent Photo Strong Intro: “I Am…” Vanity URL Industry-Relevant PPTs
  14. 14. #5: Facebook & Twitter
  15. 15. <ul><li>ADVERTISING </li></ul><ul><li>Target based on age, gender, education, interests, geography, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>State-wide candidates – Target the entire state (e.g., California) </li></ul><ul><li>Localized candidates – Target by city (e.g., Oregon’s 4 th District; Pepper Pike) </li></ul><ul><li>URL you’ll need: </li></ul><ul><li>ENGAGING </li></ul><ul><li>Create a fan page; brand the URL (e.g., /FirstLastNameforPosition) </li></ul><ul><li>Embed the fan widget back on your site; create inviting, social loop </li></ul><ul><li>Host “chats” with your fan base on a weekly / monthly basis </li></ul><ul><li>Tie in campaign activities; create and integrate “event” pages </li></ul><ul><li>Reach out to similarly-minded groups; engage admins with “ask” </li></ul><ul><li>URL you’ll need: </li></ul>Content Credit: Jill Miller Zimon; JESS3
  16. 16. URLs you’ll need: <ul><li>Does Well: </li></ul><ul><li>Verified Account </li></ul><ul><li>Names district </li></ul><ul><li>Does Well: </li></ul><ul><li>Complete bio </li></ul><ul><li>Notes her ‘pride’ in representing WY </li></ul><ul><li>Does Well: </li></ul><ul><li>Totally, 100% human </li></ul><ul><li>Does Well: </li></ul><ul><li>Discloses that account is run by staff </li></ul>FACT: 25% of Congress is on Twitter
  17. 17. Contact & Resources
  18. 18. <ul><li>Leslie A. Bradshaw </li></ul><ul><li>Email: [email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Longer form writings, thoughts: </li></ul><ul><li>In the moment: </li></ul><ul><li>Friends, family, colleagues: </li></ul><ul><li>Digital CV: </li></ul><ul><li>Industry PowerPoints: </li></ul>A Few Ways to Get in Touch with Leslie
  19. 19. Fundraising & Organizing Platforms: (D) Recommended Social Media Profiles: Facebook Resources: Twitter Resources: Search Twitter: Multi-Term Search: Monitor Twitter: Twitter Email Alerts: Congress on Twitter: Blog Resources: Blog Search: Blog Authority: Blog Directory: Wikipedia “How To” For Politicians: Left of Center Blogs: Right of Center Blogs: Trending Topics – Political: Female Blogs – General: Top 100: Regional: Female Blogs – Left of Center: Female Blogs – Right of Center: Social Media / New Media Resources Recommended Blogs