Written by Firda Amalia Mahmud, Mar 17, 2023
One of the essential things in a political campaign is a proper marketing strategy. It’s the recipe for measurable success that can grant you a path to win an election.
When it comes to the political marketing tactic, it’s important to pay attention to the environment and the target audience of the campaign.
In this case, the marketing concept is applicable to make sure that your political journey runs smoothly without a hitch, especially in this era where almost everyone uses their gadgets to access information.
To understand the idea of political marketing in the digital era better, we should take a look at each important point we will discuss below.
What is Political Marketing?
Political marketing is the concept of promoting a political figure or party to the public. It’s basically a way to promote a certain character to win the hearts of the masses, be it to become a president, a regional leader, or a legislative member.
Essentially, marketing activities involve every task that concerns customers and clients. It may be a foreign concept to be applied in several fields, such as politics. However, the concept is not too far-fetched from its application in the reality of political campaigns today.
In political marketing, the product is the image of a candidate. It’s the PR/branding of a certain figure that attracts the public or consumers to vote. Once the image sticks to the individual or the party, then the marketing activities can begin.
So, where do these marketing activities take place? It’s the era of smartphones, where information is spread rapidly on the web. Naturally, a big chunk of marketing activities are done digitally rather than on-site with real people.
Marketing Politics in the Digital Era
Generally, a marketing activity is done to promote a product or service. However, that’s a different case for political marketing. What’s being marketed here is neither a product nor a service but rather the image of a public figure.
It can be said that the marketing here functions more like PR/branding, even though it works more than that. The branding of a public figure involves many things all at once, including the existence of a website, content production, and exposure on national media.
A political figure needs to have information about his or her track record to ensure the public of his or her credibility. That’s the content that can be used to boost the online presence of the individual or party involved in an election.
To make sure that the strategy works properly, political consulting firms are needed. Such a marketing activity can only be done by people who have an expertise in running a digital campaign across all platforms.
Analyzing Voter Behavior
In the concept of marketing, analyzing the market is one of the primary things to do before running a campaign. Along with it, consumer behavior becomes an important aspect in determining the target pool that a product or service wants to target.
The same thing can be applied to political marketing, surely with certain adjustments. Considering that voters can be seen as customers, there are variables that fit the idea of attracting people to “buy” what you sell.
In order to understand what’s in store for political marketing, we can take a look at the general approach of consumer behavior models that are part of the decision making process (Howard and Sheth, 1969):
Stimulus Input Variables
To persuade potential voters, a political figure must make sure to have something to offer. In this case, provide content that includes an experience in politics over the years. After getting it done, we can continue with the specific style of action that differentiates him or her from other candidates.
In this process, it’s also important to provide an informative and SEO-friendly article on the politician’s stance on certain issues. If the figure is affiliated with a certain party, then that association can be used as a marketing tool as well.
Having potential voters acknowledge the political figure’s online presence is the start. As they process the information, they mull over several factors, such as social class, peer group, and family. Some may also consider the personality traits and past experiences of the political figure to influence their decision.
At this stage, potential voters start to ruminate about their thoughts and opinions about a certain political figure. They learn and make sure to proceed with selective screening based on their subjective views.
Decision to Vote
At this stage, there may be some changes regarding the attitude of the voters. It’s all related to the information presented to them. If the political figure’s branding sticks with potential voters, then it’s very likely that they will choose to vote.
There may be other factors that contribute to the decision to vote. For individuals who live in different environments, there are socioeconomic statuses and psychological makeups that may not be consistent from one voter to another.
The Role of SEO in Political Marketing
Just like any digital marketing activity, it’s important to have reliable political consulting firms lead the digital campaign for political purposes. This is something that an SEO service provider can do.
Hence, it can be said that SEO practitioners are considered one of the political consulting firms involved in running a digital campaign. Surely, cooperation between the political figure or party and the SEO provider is needed to ensure that the process goes without any misinformation.
To make sure that the marketing runs properly, a campaign must involve the following checklists:
- Analyzing competitors' weaknesses and strengths.
- Understanding the political landscape, locally and nationally.
- Acquiring data about potential voters from sources, such as political parties.
- Targeting the right pool of potential voters.
- Compiling the concerns or issues raised by voters.
- Strategizing content production around certain concerns.
- Publishing much-needed content on websites.
- Optimizing the website to rank highly on the SERP.
Having an SEO specialist run political marketing can be the right strategy to help any political figures go far in the competition and even win an election. With political SEO, the promotional strategy will be measured in the most trustworthy way possible.
SEO is not a black campaign. It’s a marketing strategy that helps amplify a figure’s voice to reach more potential voters who are actively searching on the internet. All the things served are real information based on the data you provide.
Firda Amalia Mahmud
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