Election campaign 2.0 and political communication on the Internet

by | Feb 24, 2013 | Information and content

Home 9 Information and content 9 Election campaign 2.0 and political communication on the Internet

La election campaign for the 2013 general elections was played out a lot on TV and the Internet, with an increased weight of the Web and social networksin communication. Politicians have used Twitter and Facebook to either establish a dialogue with voters or to deliver a message through a channel with a broader reach that can reach younger and digital segments of the population.

Being new to many of them, candidates have used web tools with more or less familiarity and spontaneity, some have exploited the potential of the web to achieve their goals while others have made glaring mistakes and will probably continue to make them after the elections because they are not familiar with the medium.

The Internet is not an exclusive channel that nullifies all other traditional media, but operates in a cross-media perspective by interacting primarily with television. Thanks to mobile devices, viewers comment on TV show highlights in real time on Twitter and Facebook.

Very often the content that comes through the small screen is also followed by those who only use the Internet to inform themselves. This is thanks to the tam tam of tweets or status updates. And you can see some speeches online thanks to Youtube where you can find everything. Controlling and managing online buzz then becomes a key aspect of carrying out a cross-media political campaign involving multiple mediums.

The spin doctor, a term by which specialists who build the public image of political candidates are identified, has now become an expert web marketing and multimedia communication guru capable of integrating online and offline to bring an integrated communication plan to life.

Success on the Web requires knowing how to intervene in the correct ways within communication flows that are no longer unidirectional but between nodes that are on the same level. But it becomes even more important, especially when it comes to political communication, to analyze feedback and network trends and be able to intervene quickly.

This data is also important for correcting offline communication, always in a structure that provides for complete synergy between traditional and new media. Online political communication cannot be improvised a few weeks before an election, but web campaigning must be prepared several months if not years in advance and carried out with a gradual increase in intensity.

There is no universal recipe on how to do good online political communication. This needs to be planned and carried out over the long term, taking into account the context in which one moves, the language and style of communication adopted, including offline, and the strategy one intends to pursue to achieve certain goals.

However, there are some guidelines that, rather than rules, can be considered shrewdness to avoid gaffes and to hit the target audience. First and foremost is clarity. Avoid gibberish and smoky messages because the Web is an immediate channel, and social networks want communications that can get to the point immediately in a clear and precise manner.

Social networks allow for dialogue with constituents, but a political figure must still respect the role he or she represents and not indulge in barroom squabbles and arguments. The Internet is a public channel, and if care is not taken with content and language, certain messages can backfire like a boomerang, while ambiguous statements can be amplified by online buzz.

Carrying out an online political campaign and an equally important post-election communication on the Web requires building a competent staff that integrates the online strategy into the multimedia strategy so as to pursue the same goals. Not one person (perhaps taken at random from friends or people to whom favors are owed) can take care of web communication, but several professionals in the field are needed with specific assignments to analyze data, follow discussions on different online channels, create content act as a glue with traditional media.

But above all, we need the raw material, that is, well-structured programs and concrete actions. Communication and the web are important tools, but if there is a lack of a defined and ralizable program (whatever political orientation and strategy is chosen) they become just a bunch of talk, the usual smoke thrown before the eyes of the Italians.

Luigi Nervo

Luigi Nervo

Digital Marketing Manager

Marketing, Seo and content expert (read the bio).

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Luigi Nervo

Luigi Nervo

Digital Marketing Manager

Marketing, Seo and content expert (read the bio).