Involved in the Philippine National Elections for 2013? Here are some online campaign tips you can use.
Virtually, everyone is interconnected today. Even with the age restrictions in the social networking sites, we see children having their own Facebook and Twitter accounts – not to say that this is wholly okay. With the local elections coming up in less than a year, politicians should follow the lead of internet marketers. They are, after all, marketing themselves and getting people to buy-in to their political promises. The potential mileage, in both reach and controversy, political candidates can get from online campaign strategies for the 2013 elections are vast.
The tools are pretty basic: a website, several social networking accounts, and a dedicated team of online marketers. Many politicians today already have their own websites where anyone can see what they up to. I checked out some of these websites and it seems that this “promotional” avenue is not being utilized as much. If politicians are to get some mileage from this relatively inexpensive campaign tool, they have to get their online staff to “pump up the volume.” And by this, I do not mean to tell them to make loud but dull noise.
Taking the cue from internet marketers, here are some of the online campaign strategies that politicians running in the 2013 elections can get into:
- Let’s talk – it’s still a “high-touch” world. But, today’s version of the politician’s handshake has taken another form in the social networking sites. Facebook and Twitter accounts can be used by politicians to get in touch with the voting public. It’s an opportunity for them to interact with the people and promote themselves as “one of us.” These social networking sites are also great venues for the politician to feel the pulse of the people.
- Go viral – videos, photos, articles, links, and what-have-yous can spread like wildfire on the internet. Politicians can have their teams produce short and sweet campaign materials that can be posted to go viral. They can even engage their supporters and have them make their own videos showing why they are giving them their vote.
- Text me – why not? The Philippines is not known as the texting capital of the world for nothing. Many would actually economize on other expenses just so they have money left over for their pre-paid load. The messages and the timing of an SMS campaign is easy enough to come up with, but how to get them to the mobile phone users is a challenge. They have to devise a way to get mobile phone numbers. This supposedly inexpensive campaign tools could turn out to be expensive if politicians have to send their people to the far-flung barrios, or however far the cell phone signals can reach, just to get these phone lists.
Modern as these times are, it will be shame if these politicians do not make use of these basic tools in their campaigns. They are easy and inexpensive enough to add some zing to their campaigns. But, there are downsides to these online strategies too especially for those who have been less than honest in their personal and public lives.
Online campaign managers should be able to moderate and filter the messages and posts appearing on the websites and social media pages of their candidates. Although times have changed and campaign strategies have been modernized, the world of politics (here and elsewhere) is still full of mudslinging and dirt digging.