We’re still several weeks away from polling day, and certainly too far to be calling who the winner is with any certainty.
But, for anyone with an interest in PR and marketing, the start of the General Election countdown is already creating some good discussion points, with which to start thinking about your imminent campaign.
Not every candidate is revelling in publicity glory from the outset, but you can be sure there’s a few twists and turns to go – leaving rivals swapping places – between now and early May.
Here’s five insights you’re already seeing at work in the election build-up, which are worth weaving into your next stage of PR planning…
1) Audience and Messaging
Know WHO you’re hoping to reach, and WHAT you’re hoping to woo them with.
Yes, of course every party wants every vote, but what you’ll see playing out already is that the candidates have very much identified who is MOST LIKELY to vote for them, and also, those which are in the more VULNERABLE seats.
They’ve spent time identifying how they need to pitch to those respective audiences.
If you have in mind who your brand appeals to and what you’d need to say to them to get their vote / money / buying power over the line, you’re a long way on the road to some very successful PR.
2) Training and Preparedness
Anyone see Nicola Sturgeon in the seven-way debate? Of course you did. Whether live on the night or in the re-run on TV stations everywhere the next morning.
The verdict? She won the PR race that night.
What does that tell us? It tells us preparedness and training are really effective.
Nicola is not without some very slick media training, and, on that particular occasion, it showed.
She came across unfazed and prepared. She knew what she’d be picked up on, and how to gain the media gaze.
Bear in mind who best represents your brand when it comes to PR delivery, and whether investment in media training could be worthwhile.
3) Media Friends
Naturally, all party press officers will have their own friends in the press – and this is when it really matters.
Leaks and drip-fed PR content will be happening left, right and centre.
The more the press are on the side of a party (or at least receptive to content) the more the party stands to benefit from column inches and wider audience-reach.
Never underestimate the importance of journalist rapport in helping you achieve success in your PR campaign.
4) Online, online….did I say ONLINE!!!
More than ever, social media and online presence are going to be playing out in this election.
It’s critical that the parties and their respective allies are utilising online opportunities to push their messaging and their respective standpoints.
This online space could, in fact, be where much of the election is won or lost – with people forming opinion over what is said and how followers and interactors react.
If you want to get a look at how the election seems to be shaping up in terms of social media followings, check out http://www.birdsonganalytics.com/election-2015/
5) Brand champions
Whether it’s a politician’s spouse or a business which feels it really benefited when that party was at the help, there are plenty of brand champions to be called on by a particular side in the election race.
Likewise, even if you don’t have a spouse to call to the frontline as part of your PR campaign, you certainly have happy casestudies or those who are really impressed by your effectiveness.
Ensure you use these to help the PR of your brand.
Good Luck! Contact 07974 359001 if I can help you!