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Political candidates eye Google as the new “front page”

Election season is well underway – and campaign season is heating up as this interactive chart on the Wall Street Journal demonstrates.  While many news stories and blog posts have focused on political campaigns use of social media to rally the base, search marketing has quietly worked its way into the mix.  Perhaps, in some ways, Google is the new “front page.”

It used to be that political candidate running for office wanted to be on the front page of major daily newspapers.  While that is still likely true (what candidate would turn it down), it may also be a sign of the times that today, the front page of Google is emerging as an above-the-fold spot of envy.

Why?  Because the first place people look for answers to their questions are search engines.

For example, Emmett Murphy, a new media strategist and founder of the DC-based PR firm 3 CLiCk Media, helped congressional candidate Jeff Doctor, who is running for Congress in North Carolina’s 9th district, land on the front page of Google.  Murphy says the integration of search marketing, social media and online news releases all played a role in achieving that goal.

The online news releases is an interesting component because, well, we are PRWeb, but it also  underscores how the release – both in construct and purpose — has evolved to facilitate new media goals, like search.  “I’ve been trying to get Jeff Doctor on the front page of Google for a while,” said Murphy, in an online news release we published this past spring. “In combination with our other efforts, PRWeb helped us do that in short time and we’ve already seen a spike in Web traffic of 100 percent directly attributable to our news release.”

There is another important point here:  the online news release is being used by candidates in concert with other tactics – and integrated online marketing strategy.   As search guru Greg Jarboe once said to me – the difference between search and social is the difference between information and influence.  Perhaps that’s the difference of vote or no vote.

Tags : social media

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