Facebook and Younger Audiences

This is how you connect and get your message out to college students.

There are more than 500 Obama groups on Facebook. One of the first,”Students for Barack Obama,” was created on July 7 by Meredith Segal, ajunior at Bowdoin College who first heard of Obama when he gave thekeynote speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2004. Insteadof starting “a petition or something” to encourage the freshman senatorto run for president, she turned to her Facebook page, created a groupand invited people (first her friends, later strangers) to join.

Now it’s a political action committee with nearly 62,000 members andchapters at 80 colleges, the most structured grass-roots studentmovement — there’s a director of field operations, an Internetdirector, a finance director and a blog team director — in thepresidential campaign so far. “Young people are on the Web,” saidSegal, 21. “That’s how we’re organizing.”

The key thing you have to remember is that a college student is only a student for anywhere from four years, to eght. Tomorrow’s customers (voter, supporter, etc.) are in Facebook. How are you connecting with them in their environment?

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