It’s strange to think about how social media and politics were almost made for each other since political campaigning has been around much longer than social media campaigns have been. But when you think about it, the main catalyst for political campaigns has always been social engagement, even if we use that term in a different way today. Social media really just makes it easier for politicians to find, listen to, and engage with their supporters during their election campaigns. That’s why a good social media political campaign strategy is crucial to the success of the whole political campaign.
To help you build the most successful political social media campaign possible, we’ve outlined 21 political campaign digital strategy tips to guide you from before you announce that you’re running to your eventual election and beyond.
A political election campaign starts well before the announcement and there are some key things you need to do to make sure that your social media political campaign has the foundation it needs to succeed.
1) Political campaigns are a brand like any other and you need to have a good understanding of your political brand before you announce that you’re running.
2) Assemble a political social media team because you’re going to need it. They can help you manage your social media accounts, create content, respond to comments, and grow your social media following.
3) Create a political social media strategy including a social media calendar, engagement goals, potential partners and influencers, and a plan for any paid social media efforts.
4) Verify your political social media accounts. It doesn’t take much time and it pays off providing authenticity to your political campaign accounts.
5) Research and understand your political campaign’s target audience. These are the people you’re trying to reach to win your election so you need to have a firm understanding of their needs, behaviors, what social networks they’re on, and what is most important to them.
6) Have a strategy in place for potential PR blunders during your political campaign. Plan for the worst and hope for the best. No one expects to accidentally post something with an embarrassing typo but it happens. Have a plan for how to approach it before it happens and I promise you won’t regret it.
7) Keep accounts for political campaigns separate from personal social media accounts.
Social media posts are the bread and butter of your social media political campaign so you need to make sure that you’re giving them the attention they deserve.
9) Don’t put all your focus on one social media channel. You should have a good understanding of where the target audience is for your political campaigns so make sure you’re engaging with them on the right social networks.
10) Tailor your message to reach your target audience. Make sure it resonates with them because they’re the people who will determine the success of your election campaign.
11) Don’t post the same thing on each social media channel. Twitter is different from Facebook and Facebook is different from Instagram. Each social networking site has its own posting style that most people follow, so you need to make sure your political campaign posts follow them as well.
12) For the more visual-heavy social platforms like Instagram and sometimes Twitter, be sure to use attention-grabbing images. Preferably actual photos vs stock photos.
13) Video content should not be overlooked. Not only can you use video content on channels like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to make your election campaign posts more enticing, you also should create a YouTube channel. You can host videos from your election campaign tour and important messages you want to share with your followers.
14) Don’t forget about forums like Reddit and other online communities. These communities are great for starting discussions, getting feedback, and answering questions about your political campaign or topics that are important to your campaign.
15) Use social media content curation tools to help build out the content you use on your social media channels.
16) Not everything is going to go viral and that’s okay. It’s actually normal.
17) Ask your followers for feedback on your political campaigns, positive or negative. It’s a quick way to get a sense of what’s important to the supporters and critics of political campaigns. It also shows your followers that you care about their needs and desires.
Another important part of your political campaign’s social media strategy is to grow your social media followers so your election campaign’s message reaches more people.
18) Encourage the followers of your election campaign to spread the word to grow your social following. This can be especially important during periods of political fundraising.
19) Add your social accounts to your political campaign website and email signature. You can even add a social feed to your website that aggregates your political campaign’s social media posts into one beautiful place.
20) Social media contests can be a great way to increase your followers. Social sharing contests can motivate your existing election campaign followers to share the contest’s social posts on their social profiles getting more views with each share.
21) Partner up with influencers and organizations that support your political campaign and are willing to share your posts with their followers.
It’s easy to see the importance of social media in political campaigns, figuring out how to do it right is the challenge. If you continue to create compelling social media posts and grow your followers, then your social media political campaign is on track to become an integral piece of your election campaign’s overall marketing strategy. Just be sure to keep at it, social media never sleeps so don’t stop posting and seeking new followers just because you feel like you’re in a comfortable spot. Because your competitors won’t stop.
Please let us know what you think of these tips and if you have any other tips for crafting a successful social media political campaign! Or check out Juicer’s social media tools for political campaigns.