â–¶ Politics Goes Social: Members of the U.S. Congress and U.K. Parliament are increasingly using social media as a channel to reach constituents, according to the 2010 Capital Staffers Index, released by Edelman. Specific findings:
• Staffers report their members’ use of Facebook has increased dramatically in the last three years—62% in 2010 vs. 15% in 2007. Use of text messaging has nearly doubled (55% vs. 35%) in that same time frame. Use of blogging (46% vs. 16%) and use of Twitter (38% vs. 7%) have also grown.
• The study also surveyed the online access patterns of staffers, finding that their online activity focused on information-gathering from traditional online news sites prior to 10 a.m., then engaging with social media after 10 a.m. Social media spikes traditionally occur at lunchtime and after 6 p.m.
• Certain traditional channels continue to be seen as effective by politicians, the most effective being: one-on-one meetings (90%), TV appearances (93%), speaking events (90%), newspaper articles (86%) and radio appearances (85%). PRN