Twittering in Politics, Building Constituencies Online with Texting & Social Networks

Big companies are good at innovating within silos, but woefully bad at combining creative energies across divisions to build new businesses. As securities analyst Jessica Cohen once asked, “How is it possible that Time Warner owned both Warner Music and AOL and didn’t create something like iTunes?”

We couldn’t agree more. However, here is an example or two of innovation in an unlikely location: the U.S. Congress. Some chambers are so creaky they still look like they did in 1955. On the other hand, one congressman is using such new technologies as Twitter to have discussions directly with constituents as debates are rolling in the House. Fast Company.TV interviewed Tim Ryan, D-OH* about FISA laws and how he used Twitter to message people. (Bipartisan note: See our prior blog regarding Senator John McCain’s questions on LinkedIn. Senator McCain asked another question on that business network today, August 6, 2008).

Click below to watch the video.

Since the Congressman is not a reporter, he uses Twitter to build a constituency and help have two-way conversations that are not 30 second sound bites. If the information is too complicated and the constituent wants a 3 minute answer this may be a vehicle to provide more detail.

According to the Harvard Business review (July, 2008), “The problem, we believe, is structural: Business-unit boundaries exist precisely because they create efficient structures for executing strategy. But silo focus and ruthless efficiency come at the cost of cross-divisional collaboration, so some innovation opportunities are either poorly executed or not seen at all. The solution, we think, lies not in reorganization but in informal communication through the social networks that exist throughout the company. These networks must be shaped and cultivated to efficiently find and exploit innovations.”

* Note: we do not intend this to be an endorsement of the point of view presented on FISA by the Congressman. We do see a future for text messaging in politics and a way to reach and broaden dialogs.

Applications of social networks you might consider (we can help):

1. External – Open innovation – use of the right networks for your audience to enhance or create new products and services
2. External – Customer feedback regarding existing products and services
3. External & family – Connecting with and marketing to kids who don’t email – they text each other.
4. Web synergies – Building web traffic for specific interests, refine content, enhance feedback.
5. Blog synergies – Building blog traffic and understanding what’s important
6. Internal, Innovation – Breaking down boundaries that stifle innovation (company silos, geographies, applications, etc).

No World Borders’ expertise in social networks for business is unsurpassed. Contact us if we can help you reach new constituencies in your market.

Michael F. Arrigo

Michael is Managing Partner & CEO of No World Borders, a leading healthcare management and IT consulting firm. He serves as an expert witness in Federal and State Court and was recently ruled as an expert by a 9th Circuit Federal Judge. He serves as a patent expert witness on intellectual property disputes, both as a Technical Expert and a Damages expert. His vision for the firm is to continue acquisition of skills and technology that support the intersection of clinical data and administrative health data where the eligibility for medically necessary care is determined. He leads a team that provides litigation consulting as well as advisory regarding medical coding, medical billing, medical bill review and HIPAA Privacy and Security best practices for healthcare clients, Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records. He advises legal teams as an expert witness in HIPAA Privacy and Security, medical coding and billing and usual and customary cost of care, the Affordable Care Act and benefits enrollment, white collar crime, False Claims Act, Anti-Kickback, Stark Law, physician compensation, Insurance bad faith, payor-provider disputes, ERISA plan-third-party administrator disputes, third-party liability, and the Medicare Secondary Payer Act (MSPA) MMSEA Section 111 reporting. He uses these skills in disputes regarding the valuation of pharmaceuticals and drug costs and in the review and audit of pain management and opioid prescribers under state Standards and the Controlled Substances Act. He consults to venture capital and private equity firms on mHealth, Cloud Computing in Healthcare, and Software as a Service. He advises ERISA self-insured employers on cost of care and regulations. Arrigo was recently retained by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding a significant false claims act investigation. He has provided opinions on over $1 billion in health care claims and due diligence on over $8 billion in healthcare mergers and acquisitions. Education: UC Irvine - Economics and Computer Science, University of Southern California - Business, studies at Stanford Medical School - Biomedical Informatics, studies at Harvard Medical School - Bioethics. Trained in over 10 medical specialties in medical billing and coding. Trained by U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and PTAB Judges on patent statutes, rules and case law (as a non-attorney to better advise clients on Technical and Damages aspects of patent construction and claims). Mr. Arrigo has been interviewed quoted in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and National Public Radio, Fortune, KNX 1070 Radio, Kaiser Health News, NBC Television News, The Capitol Forum and other media outlets. See and for more about the company.

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