Social media strategies aren’t always intuitive to develop. Because of this, some political candidates overlook social media as a powerful tool for their campaign. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, here are some ideas to help kick-start your online presence:
It should come as no surprise that there’s a ton of young people on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and the like. If you’re an “experienced” candidate or elected official who is only familiar with traditional methods of gaining exposure (events, television, yard signs, etc.), you could be neglecting a key, young demographic that can be reached through these social channels.
When you’re considering your strategy, make sure you’re developing content that can speak to this audience. Stay authentic, but speak to them in a relatable way. Think about what issues are important to younger audiences and how you can relay your positions across social media. If you’re lost, browse other politicians’ online presence. What are they doing right, and what things could they improve? You can use this as a jumping off point for your own approach.
While this is a given for any politician, coming across as authentic on social media can be a little tricky. There’s a fine line between giving your audience a genuine look into your life and sharing photos on social media just to garner attention. While you want to portray yourself in a positive light, don’t be afraid to let your guard down a little. Showing a sense of humor, or simply showing you’re a real person can go a long way. People want to align with a representative that, well, represents them!
Use social media to create a feeling of transparency between you and your potential supporters. The more familiar you feel to them, the more likely it is that they’ll vote for you (or volunteer, donate, etc. etc.). Additionally, if you take the reins of your image on social media, it minimizes the ability of the press to manipulate it.
Facebook has recently introduced a new feature that allows you to live stream right to your Facebook page. This feature is also available on other channels, such as Instagram and Twitter. With most online content strategies shifting toward video, live streaming will keep you in the forefront of the ever-changing face of social media.
Going live is a great idea for multiple reasons, but one of the biggest: it tends to get great engagement. With social media’s increasing saturation, standing out from your competition could be a true difference maker. Live videos tend to appear first on users’ Facebook and Instagram feeds, so utilizing it could keep you one step ahead. If you’re wondering when you should go live, there are plenty of different occasions. You could go live at a rally, or fundraiser, or simply host a live Q&A on your Facebook page. Live streaming is also a fantastic way to show your true colors to those watching.
The comment section of your different social media accounts should not be ignored. In fact, it’s where you should be focusing a generous amount of your attention. Address the concerns, questions and praise people have for you. Responding to someone’s skepticism could influence their voting decision.
You should also take a step back from individual comments and assess any common themes or feedback. Do a lot of them share the same concerns? Do a significant number of people support you for a reason you haven’t been vocalizing enough? Use the comments as a way to reassess and reform your overall strategy.
In addition to social media, PoliticalBank allows for direct communication between politicians and voters. If you’re looking for tools to put you ahead of your competition, make a profile on PoliticalBank today.
Lauren Murrah is a social media manager at Political Bank. She strives to bring valuable & informative stories to voters & politicians alike.