Social Media In Nigerian Election

Social media allows candidates to communicate
directly with citizens, keeping control of the
content, distribution and timing of their messages,
as well as reducing their dependence on traditional
intermediaries. It also provides a way for
politicians to monitor what is happening in the
public sphere during an election campaign. The
potential
impact
of
social
media
campaigning
first
became
evident
in
the
2008
United
States
(US)
presidential election. President Barack Obama’s
campaign included the use of social media
platforms such as Facebook, MySpace and
YouTube. Others included podcasting and mobile
messaging.
The election, dubbed by many, as the ‘Facebook
election’, saw nearly 70% of the vote among
Americans aged 25 years and younger going to
Obama
By 2011, Obama’s Twitter account –
@BarackObama, which he used to promote
legislation and support for his policies, was the
third Twitter account in the world to have at least
10 million followers.
If Barack Obama’s social media team has taught
us anything, it’s that images speak louder than
words, with his most popular tweet (and the most
retweeted tweet on the entire social network in
2012) consisting of a photo of him and Michelle
Obama.
I believe that his Excellency, Goodluck Ebele
Jonathan (GEJ) has been active on Facebook
hitherto. He has been engaging the younger
generation through his Facebook fan page for at
least 4 years now, and his status updates are
commendable.
Nigerian politicians who are not integrating active
social media campaign into their arsenal may miss
the opportunity to connect with the 45 million
internet users in Nigeria. Their social media
campaign should include Facebook, Twitter,
Instagram, LinkedIn and Google Plus, among
others.
All over the world, old people do not embrace
technology as compared to the younger
generation. General Muhammed Buhari (GMB) may
not be an exception. The way I see it, GEJ’s usage
of social media to connect to, and build rapport
with Nigerians is more targeted, innovative and
effective. GMB may need to tighten his social
media campaign, strategies and innovations.
Politics is all about connecting to the people,
building rapport, and painting a mental picture of
the future. I can call it a ‘mind’ game. The goal of
an effective election campaign is to influence
people’s perception and their decision. I see
election campaign as marketing.
Marketing guru, Jay Conrad, author of Guerrilla
Marketing says that people need to hear about
your product or services for an average of 27
times before they make a purchase decision. In the
end, purchase decisions are made in the
subconscious mind.

written by Agbolade Omowole of Vanguard Newspaper

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Thanks very interesting blog!

    Like

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