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MEMBER DIARY

Social Victory Center and the GOP’s Tech Advantage

From the diaries.

More than in any past election, online digital technology will be essential to a winning 2012 campaign. For the Republican National Committee, it is not enough simply to imitate the standard practices of the day. We want to raise the bar—identifying and developing new technology to compete in the digital sphere.

That entrepreneurial spirit led us to create the GOP Social Victory Center, a first of its kind online application that revolutionizes the way volunteers and activists take part in elections. The SVC, which launched yesterday, puts all the important tools in one place, breaks down geographic barriers, and instantly connects users with our grassroots network across the country. And it’s all right on Facebook.

No other campaign or committee—neither the Obama campaign nor the DNC—has done what we have: leveraged the popularity of Facebook to empower Americans to be directly involved in the political process.

Welcome to the new frontier of digital activism.

Whether we admit it or not, Americans are glued to what is happening on Facebook. 161 million Americans are active users of the site. Fifty percent visit daily. Every day, posts are “liked” or commented on 2.7 billion times. The average user spends six to seven hours on Facebook a month. It only makes sense to offer a one-stop shop for political activism here, rather than asking users to hassle with visiting other sites and creating multiple accounts.

After logging into the Social Victory Center—in the same way one uses any Facebook application—users find political news and videos that are customized to their interests and location. They can engage and organize with voters across the country through discussions and event planning features, and they can find ways to volunteer—in their communities or from home.

Without leaving the Facebook application, a volunteer can make voter-identification or Get Out the Vote phone calls to pivotal battleground states right from home. We’ve streamlined and simplified a process that was often clunky and frustrating—but one that is critical to voter turnout on Election Day.

As volunteers read and watch, discuss and volunteer, their friends are alerted to their actions. Sharing is automatic, allowing us to immediately expand our reach. Time and money will not have to be spent asking people to view our multimedia. Thanks to their friends’ use of the SVC, previously unengaged users will see it all right on their Facebook Newsfeeds.

The SVC is not the first time the RNC has developed and deployed cutting-edge technology. In 2011, we launched a video mobile message system, our “mobile army,” with which we can send videos and other exclusive content directly to subscribers’ smart phones anytime, anywhere.

With the relationships and following we have built on social media in the last year, we will immediately connect thousands of energized activists with the Social Victory Center. And in no time, countless others will have heard of it—and decided to sign up.

The SVC will allow us to do an even better job of listening to our supporters and to conservative grassroots activists across the country. We have worked hard to encourage and support the important conversation and bottom-up activism that the Internet allows. With the SVC, we hope to facilitate more of those conversations and create more connections and relationships.

The RNC will, of course, continue with our successful online advertising, our web videos, and our news-driving Twitter campaigns. We unrelentingly hold President Obama accountable to his record and his words, and when news breaks we make sure it breaks through the noise to reach the average voter.

Social media has dramatically changed politics in recent years, giving more power to the individual voter and disseminating information at record speed. Now, with the GOP Social Victory Center, Republicans will use this resource to its fullest potential. And that’s certainly something to “like.”

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