With an upbeat background score and a short email, Hillary Clinton announced her candidacy for the 2016 US Presidency. Unlike Ted Cruz who announced with a Fiery Speech from Liberty University or Ron Paul who banged the Podium in his Home state of Kentucky, Clinton offered only a few words of support at the end of a two minute video posted to her website:
“I’m getting ready to do something too. I’m running for president…. Everyday Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion — so you can do more than just get by — you can get ahead. And stay ahead. Because when families are strong, America is strong. So I’m hitting the road to earn your vote, because it’s your time. And I hope you’ll join me on this journey.”
To be honest, I skipped over the video a few times thinking it was just a standard ad. Talk about grass-roots movement; she’s not bothering to tell anyone (though, a mere six hours after posting, the video has been viewed 1.3 million times).
Yet, it might be the smartest move she can make. By releasing solely through social media and rolling a series of small pit-stops through the heartland, she’s working hard to cast off the mantle of Ice Queen she earned in 2008. As well, she immediately distances herself from the traditional campaign style of the antiquated Oughts. Finally, she gives a hearty nod to her base and a gentle comehither to certain vacillating minorities who, rightly so, are miffed at feeling the cold shoulder from Democrats.
Clinton imparted volumes about her candidacy during those two minutes. The video highlights a number of groups who will never vote Republican: mixed-race couples, blacks, single-parent families, young voters. It even underlines two Latino business owners (sub-titled from Spanish) and a gay couple getting ready for their wedding. She couldn’t be any more anti “classic Middle America” if she tried.
In one bold stroke, Clinton solidified her base, starkly separated herself from competition (internal and external), and embraced that ultimate engine for market penetration, social media. Not too shabby. I think I’m going to enjoy this campaign season.