Tools of the Trade

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Posted on January 29, 2013

Apps and software have re-defined the way political parties target their messages.

Mastering social media has become critical for politicians and aspiring politicians: powerful tools like Facebook and Twitter provide new ways to directly reach, understand and motivate voters, while enhancing traditional means of contact.
The same tools and tactics have revolutionized the way campaign-style communications strategies can be executed by organizations seeking to engage stakeholders and win their support.
One of the most powerful of these new tools is NationBuilder.
Used by the Obama 2012 campaign and Idle No More organizers, it manages campaign websites, merging and tracking individuals across multiple platforms. It allows for contact and communication via text message, email and other social media. A matching capability also connects with an individual’s public data, including photographs, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
Access to such detailed information allows campaign managers to filter and target voters as never before. For example, NationBuilder can filter and email those who have signed a petition on a particular date, live in a particular area or taken political action. Not only that, it does so using language that is already familiar for having been used in previous communications. Such specific targeting allows campaigns to continually refine their audience, language and tactics for optimum results as well as cost efficiency.
From that point, user contact can be made with customized social media posts, petitions, surveys, donation requests or direct emails. The 2014 American Congressional mid-term campaigns had particular success in leveraging this insight for candidate door-knocking. Even before the resident opened the door, the person standing on their porch had the most resonant messages in hand.
In political or corporate campaigns, these technological tools give campaigns enhanced power to gather relevant data, build popular support, muster financial resources and incite action. It also eliminates the ‘middleman,’ side-stepping mainstream media and directly influencing opinion and results.
When community-organizing tools like NationBuilder are combined with the insight gathered from the analytics available through Google, Facebook, Twitter and social media listening software, all campaigns can communicate more intelligently, measure performance, cultivate desired action and build awareness.

In political or corporate campaigns, these technological tools give campaigns enhanced power to gather relevant data, build popular support, muster financial resources and incite action.

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