Video Your Vote is Social Media at its Greatest

So tomorrow is the day many have been waiting for for months- Election Day.  One of the few days the individual citizen feels empowered by casting votes for the candidates they feel will best represent their ideals in office.

As for social media marketing and the election, we could roll through the ways in which candidates have used social media marketing in their 2008 campaigns to better their chances at winning.  But what I find most interesting during such a heated presidential campaign are the non-partisan social media outlets where people can voice their experiences and opinions.  Because collaboration is the beauty of social media.

About a month ago, I noticed a video ad on YouTube’s homepage for Video Your Vote.  This is a non-partisan project by PBS and YouTube to encourage YouTube users to submit videos of their voting experiences.  Their goal is to find videos that document the “excitement, energy, and last second campaigning” at voting polls.

This is an awesome non-partisan effort to encourage user participation.  What is amazing is the number of videos they have received.  Asking for user generated video is one of the highest levels of participation you can ask for in social media.  Persuading people to submit videos to a site without an incentive (i.e. a prize) can be even more difficult.  What this project has proved from a social media marketing perspective is that people will participate if they care enough about the subject.

What adds to the greatness is that it seems as though these videos do not have to pass much of a screening process.  Most of these videos are compelling and interesting, and few are just service announcements for their candidates.  It seems as though PBS and YouTube have tried not to moderate the videos very much, if at all.  Of course I can’t say for sure because I don’t work for the campaign and don’t see the inner workings of the video selection process, but nonetheless it seems like this channel is fairly free of political sway.

User generated content that is free from moderation.  That’s why Video Your Vote is social media at its greatest.  Record your voting experience tomorrow (if you haven’t already voted) and submit it by tagging it on YouTube with “videoyourvote”.

(As a personal service announcement, don’t forget to research your state offices.  They’re just as important as the presidential election!)

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