The famous criminal Willie Sutton was once asked why he robbed banks, and his response was simple, eloquent, and humorous:

“Because that’s where the money is.”

Now I have been told that Sutton never really said this. Instead, it was created by a journalist who was willing to bend the truth to write a more interesting story. It also makes for a great opening metaphor for the purposes of this post.

A friend of mine asked me if I would help his daughter with her student body government campaign. Being that she was our go-to baby sitter, I responded in the affirmative, since my social life depended on her willingness and availability.

She was running for Student Body Secretary at a local high school. My interest was not limited to being self serving. I also relished the oppurtunity to message the elusive american teenager and engage them on a meaningful level. The only limitations imposed was that I could not directly address the competition in any way. In reading the election bylaws, the approved mediums was limited to posters, banners and collateral such as flyers and campaign buttons – no mention excluding digital or social media.

After brief consideration, we decided to hang our hats on social media – since that’s where the kids are– specifically Instagram & SnapChat. Not wanting to show our cards too early, we determined a last minute digital barrage for the final 3 days before the election. The week’s leading up was spent gathering SnapChat contacts. With 3 days left to campaign, we unleashed digital Hell on the other candidates. 2 Snapchat messages a day and an Instagram feed that was followed by 2 neighboring schools took the other candidates by surprise with no chance to come up to speed and match our efforts.

The campaign was hugely successful. She won by a landslide. Sadly, she has no time to babysit for us anymore.