Maybe it was Obama’s victory. Maybe it was Oprah. In any case, public officials are seeing the benefits of social media: better connectivity with their audience, faster responses to problem issues and lower per unit cost of communications.
Benefits to business apply to government as well. I’ve seen an uptick in the past few weeks on reports and articles about public officials using social media, and Twitter in particular.
Check out the selection of headlines from recent days. Officials in public education, legislatures and city managment are looking to Twitter to connect with stakeholders. The widely publicized Tweets sent by a NASA astronaut from the space shuttle show there are many ways publicly-funded agencies can provide added value to tax-payers.
For those of us who “get it,” signing on to social media is a no-brainer. Instinctively cautious public officials are to be commended for braving the new world.