Digital Politics

  • icon 01.09.2021
  • icon 14

 

Global trends in politics are actively changing, and Ukraine is no exception. Trump’s elections in the United States (an in-depth analysis here), and then Zelensky’s elections in Ukraine (an analysis here) showed that the future lies in the active use of digital technologies. Today it’s very difficult to find a person who doesn’t use social media, doesn’t scroll through the news feed and binges various videos, so why not use this to bring worthy people to power?

Situation

The latest local elections in Ukraine happened in 2020, electing regional, district and city councils, mayors of cities, heads of township and village councils. We were contacted by 7 candidates.

Hypothesis 1. The use of marketing communication techniques inherent to business significantly enhances the results in electoral advertising campaigns on different levels.

Note. In the process of implementing all these campaigns, our team worked closely with Vector Consulting. Its director and political strategist, Dmitry Anoprienko, works at the intersection of IT and political technologies.

 

Idea

* One of the main Vector Consulting products is the Politmeister CRM system, created for the complex management of the activities of political parties. It solves the main issues that arise for political parties and leaders, such as: building and developing the activities of the organization, registering members of the organization, certification of the territory (which is very important for conducting the field stage of the election campaign), preparing and maintaining public and electoral projects.

 

How to achieve the desired result?

Actually, we’d developed a complex digital marketing funnel, which combined all communication channels. We used it in all our campaigns, depending on the conditions, changing the components:

 

 

The funnel displays the following key points:

  1. Complexity: coverage of all communication channels (YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, social media, instant messengers and PR)
  2. Consistency: to link all communication channels into a single marketing system that would lead potential voters to make the right decision and vote for the candidate. That is, we need people to watch the video, and we can group them according to their interests, location, as well as periodically retarget them with short cuts of this video with the necessary messages and goals.

What we managed to find out at this stage of implementation:

 

  • People vote for the result
  • Visibility of the result is important
  • To make a decision, people need to be periodically reminded of this result

 

Are there any significant differences between the digital domain and the offline field? In the field, traditionally, all parties:

  • Put up billboards;
  • Hand out leaflets with programs of parties and candidates;
  • Write, print and distribute zines on how their candidate is simply the best.

 

The traditional form, however, gradually stops working, and digital provides an additional colossal opportunity not only to tell, but also to show. In addition, to get feedback (views, likes, comments), as it’s not always possible to ask potential voters directly. What do polls usually look like? “Hello! Will you vote for our candidate?”— “Oh sure!” — without a single idea about who the candidate they’re asked about actually is.

It’s easier to track the progress of candidates who skillfully use digital. This way you also can acquire and maintain audience loyalty. That is why we started with designing candidates’ social media.

 

 

 

 

 

Examples of successful domestic and foreign cases prove that advertising (any advertising: from food products, services, household goods to presidential elections) should be catchy and interesting. Here is an example of one of our videos, which we made in a blockbuster format, for a candidate for deputy in Gostomel (you can watch the video just below 👇).

Hypothesis 2: “Any” ordinary mortal “can become a politician”.

The field is the foundation of any election campaign, and digital are the piles that hold the foundation, thus making a building into a reliable structure and, as a result, achieving a result that can be predicted. Digital compiles to about 20-25% of success, but such success is more controllable and predictable.

 

Implementation

What did we focus on in the election campaigns?

  1. Agenda must be local. Roads, schools, traffic jams, construction sites, etc. The problems shouldn’t be pulled out of a hat, though. It has to be the real electorate’s pain (ideally a case + a solution ready).
  2. Understanding and vision are indispensable for problem solving. All our candidates had a personal strategy (program) and party program, plus personal “wishes”, what they would like to change / improve in the city / region, how it will be achieved and what the result will be.
  3. The interrelation of the needs (pains) of people and the possibilities of their satisfaction (solutions) among the candidates — all this provides the foundation for the development and implementation of the candidates’ election marketing campaign.

 

Gostomel

  • A candidate into the city council
  • A focus on problem solving, clear vision and steps to achieve results
  • Implementation of a marketing funnel, imposition of fields and CRM systems on data, geotargeting + placement of articles in the media, revealing the problematics and the candidate’s vision for solving problems
  • A video describing the issues and a clear message “I will solve these problems”
  • Extensively studied target audience

 

Here is the original audio, later the video was re-dubbed.

 

 

+ 4 more videos that have already been segmented by audience

 

🚴‍♂️ Video about a sports lifestyle

 

🇺🇦 Patriotic video

 

👨‍👩‍👦 Video about family values

 

🌐 Video about digitalization

 

Vyshneve

  • An active mayor
  • Emphasis on what has already been done (we completely based it on the mayor’s list of good deeds, since our main competitor had not previously been in power and could only criticize him)
  • Implementation of a marketing funnel, overlaying data fields and CRM systems, geo targeting
  • A detailed video about the results achieved with an emphasis on further development and cutting of mini-videos:

 

 

2nd video

3rd video

4th video

Result: victory!

 

Kryukovshchina

  • An active councilman
  • Emphasis on what has already been done
  • Implementation of a marketing funnel, overlaying data fields and CRM systems, geo targeting
  • A detailed video about the results achieved with an emphasis on further development and cutting of mini-videos:

 

 

What else is important:

  • a single message for all channels: you have a problem, our candidate has a solution
  • closed loop of actions for interaction with the target audience with super-personalized micro-targeting in four stages + social media
  • together with political strategists, we have developed 5 different videos for five different segments of the target audience
  • clear positioning for different target audiences: the candidate is “local”, speaks their language, experiences the same problems, has a solution = understanding and involvement of the target audience

Result: victory.

 

For each of our projects, as one of the stages of the campaign, we:

  • screened the target audience
  • designed social media profiles
  • launched the campaign throughout the media
  • for some projects, we also made additional websites (mainly for collecting analytics and posting technical tools), here are some of them:

 

📌 https://strakhovska.com.ua/

📌 https://kripak-andrii-ze.site/

📌 https://www.feier-ze.site

 

Key points and main triggers for developing a candidate’s website ☝️☝️☝️:

  • a noticeable, memorable and pleasant design

  • information about politics with a detailed background of merits and activities, motivation and worldview

  • additional information about what will be done if elected
  • a popular marketing section “kitchen”, showing what social projects the candidate has already implemented

  • a block with a city development strategy
  • the “common enemy” scheme: a block about the problem (lack of jobs) and its solution

  • a capture form: an ability to leave an application for communication with the candidate or make your proposal to improve the city / district
  • the ability to subscribe to social media profiles to follow and keep in touch
  • and most importantly, clearly written information (number on the list, district, party) so that the voter makes the right choice.

 

Results: 6 out of 7 – victory

Conclusions

  • Affordability. Nowadays, coming to power in Ukraine is much easier and cheaper than before. On one hand, this is good, but on the other, it has led to the fact that many unskilled people came to politics and management. This has already become a real problem. But yes, if desired, anyone can become a deputy.
  • The second is digitalization. Digital sips into all spheres of life, including politics. Yes, there are a number of nuances that cannot be ruled out. Yes, there is no substitute for active work with voters in the field, but it can be significantly strengthened and reinforced, which will bring the desired result. This is confirmed by the statistics of our campaigns. Not all parties have understood that yet, but it opens up great prospects for development in this niche for us.
  • The third is localization. People sympathize with candidates who know firsthand the problems of the region and localities, suffer from these problems themselves and are ready to solve them.
  • The fourth is marketing. Politics is the same marketing, only you pay for the “product” you like with your vote. In the digital age, we are already leads in someone’s CRM system: segmented by interests, regions, geolocations; each with their own patterns of behavior. Business successfully uses this information, and politics is no exception, and all this is already being actively used to influence voters. If you are aware of this, then you are “armed”, and if not, then this is your conscious choice.
  • Fifth is perspective. The train moves forward, with or without us. My team and I want to be able to change something for the better in our country, so we will continue to develop this direction.

Well, it helps that we are good at it too 🙂

 

Case analysis was prepared by Yulia Tsesarenko

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