It was the most anticipated day of the year – election night. For the past few months, it seemed as if it was all anyone could talk about. It was one of the most talked-about topics this year, and it seemed to gather the attention of influencers and social media platforms as well.
The 2020 Presidential election amassed over 150 million votes, a record-breaking number for any presidential election. Many Americans also registered to vote, and this year social media had much to do with it. According to Forbes, Snapchat helped over 1 million people register to vote through their app, which became a massive reach with the Gen-Z population. Influencers also decided to join in on the action and urged their followers to vote. Many celebrities used their social media platforms to engage with their followers and encourage them to vote. Some influencers even decided to reward their followers if they registered to vote.
YouTube star David Dobrik, famous for his notorious car giveaways in his vlogs, announced he would be giving away five brand new Tesla 3’s to five lucky followers. All they had to do was share his post, tag a friend, and register to vote. The non-profit organization Dobrik partnered with, HeadCount, had over 100,000 people register to vote within 24 hours of Dobrik’s post. An astonishing number that only kept growing and growing. For a while, this was all people saw on their Instagram stories, and it became a trending hashtag on Twitter.
The impact this election had on social media was reflected through posts and different options of registering to vote, courtesy of the platforms themselves. Upon opening the app, Instagram would ask its users if they were registered to vote and showed them, depending on where they lived, the nearest place to register to vote. Tik Tok also joined in and would play sponsored messages encouraging its users to go out and vote, with many of its stars following suit. Although only 16 years old, Tik Tok sensation Charli D’Amelio encouraged her 98.9 million followers to vote by posting a Tik Tok explaining the importance of voting in this election. The video garnered much engagement from fans, gathering over 48 million views and over 8 million likes.
With the involvement of influencers behind this election, it was almost impossible not to be registered to vote. But, it certainly did not stop just there. Many celebrities used their platforms to encourage voting as well. Celebrities would hold lives with either other celebrity friends or voting organizations as a way to interact and educate their fans on the importance of voting. Selena Gomez and Timothée Chalamet held a live stream on Gomez’s Instagram. Fans were able to see the two talk about the election, as well as see Chalamet voting in New York City with his friends. The hashtag #vote became very used among influencers, celebrities, and people everywhere, with posts and tweets of post-voting pictures.
This election had to be one of the most heavily social media-driven ones. The power of social media allowed people to feel as if their voice mattered, and it broke records. From entering car giveaways to registering to vote on Snapchat, social media plays a huge role in society and has become the most effective form of communication and attention for the 21st century.