Kids Used as Props at Obama Gun Control Executive Order Signing

President Obama today was surrounded by children as he signed 23 executive orders into law regarding gun control.  This was a brilliant move as it softens any story, or excerpt of video used by opponents of the President’s speech.  Simultaneously the White House released a new hashtag for this initiative #NowIsTheTime.

If you are going to a press conference on a topic that is as heated and controversial as gun control, take a lesson from the pros and soften your image, surround yourself was children and the victims of the horrendous thing you are trying to stop.  It’s powerful, not because its self-serving (though it might be) but because it reminds Americans of the people who are effected by whatever terrible thing you are getting rid of.

Also this is a perfect example of the blending of social media with old media.  By launching the #hashtag, the White House will reach an audience that they wouldn’t otherwise, giving the President’s supporters another way to be engaged.  Reaching people in the medium they choose, such as on twitter or facebook, enables any group, candidate or elected office holder to spread their message much further.  It should be noted that before you can make a true impact you must have pushed people to and gotten a following on social media, usually candidates will not have a problem with this, as people are interested in what they have to say and so will follow them if a profile is easily found.  Make it easy for people interested in your candidate to find them online by linking to their social media pages and including in emails an ask for people to follow the candidate online.

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