The vast majority of people who want to get into politics have little or no name recognition. Oh, they think everyone knows them, but they are usually lulled into a false sense of popularity.
If you’re thinking about running for political office, you need to start branding yourself immediately. If your opponent is an incumbent, they already have the name recognition you will need to overcome. You will need to give people a reason why they will want to leave their candidate for you. And you will need time to establish yourself.
If you are running for an open seat in a field of other candidates, you will need to set yourself apart from your opponent(s). Becoming a subject matter expert is one of the easiest ways.
Whether it’s public safety, transportation, or maybe the environment, you need something to build your political social media campaign around whatever the cause. That way, when a particular issue arises, the local media – and in some instances, the national press – calls on you for an opinion.
Becoming the “expert” also allows you to establish a vital email marketing list that your followers can join to receive “insider” information on your chosen topic. This email list will become necessary if and when you decide to start your political campaign.
Creating political social media campaigns are more than posting cute pictures of you in the backyard with friends around the barbecue. Knowing when is the right time to post to get maximum exposure is valuable, and knowing which posts to boost and when will save you money in the long run. Knowing how to geo-target certain posts for specific messaging allows you to send targeted messages to specific demographics.
Now your overall political advertising campaign strategy will – or should – contain print, video, and social media components. And while video and print media remain a considerable part of your messaging and your budget, only your social media component can alter your messaging instantly with any issue that arises.
With print media, the huge downside is that your message can get lost and tossed with all the other print media stuffed in your mailbox during election time.
Video media is costly to produce and costly to broadcast on television. As more and more people are “cutting the cord” and streaming their television shows, fewer people are watching broadcast television. Finding the right broadcast channel and the right time to reach your targeted audience can be tricky.
With the right social media experts, that same video aired on television can be posted to your various social media platforms and boosted and targeted at various times at a fraction of the cost.
Your social media experts should also be able to manage your political email campaign so that your messaging and engagement are consistent and timely.
First, we at Reach Voters advise against signing any long-term contract. In theory, it sounds like an ideal situation for both parties to have a long-term contract; that way, everyone is on the same page throughout the campaign, things work better when both sides know there are shorter contracts at work.
Throughout a campaign, candidates may become overzealous and too demanding of time and resources that strain social media experts. Their behavior is somewhat tempered when they know they can lose their social media campaign if their experts can walk at the end of a quarter. Conversely, if a social media expert knows they have a paycheck coming in for the next couple of years, they may not be as eager to please as they would if they knew their client might drop them at the end of the quarter.
Ideally, you’d want your social media experts with you before you announce your intentions. They would have been working on your “fluff” to raise your “favorables.” As you get closer to your election, you should expect to increase your social media budget as more time and attention will be given to your campaign. Additionally, there will be a significant cost to boosting and geo-targeting videos and ads to specific audiences.
If you’re thinking about getting into politics, give Reach Voters a call and let us see how we can help you with your campaign.