People want to know who they are voting for. They want to know the candidates belief system, who their family is and where they came from. The people want to know who they are as a person and what their personality is like. There are several different ways that candidates can show who they are as a person – one of those ways is through advertising and social media. In this article, we will discuss the advantages of using social media to show your constituents who you are and what you are about.

Social media statistics from 2019 show that there are 3.5 billion social media users worldwide, and this number is only growing. That equates to about 45% of the current population. 90.4% of social media users are Millennials, 77.5% are Generation X, and 48.2% are active social media users. Social media has the potential to reach billions of voters. Not only can you reach voters, but you can reach specific voters with a background in voting your particular belief system. This is called “targeting.” Social media has clearly changed the game when it comes to advertising and getting people to listen to who you are.

As mentioned before, candidates need to remember that they are hired by the people and in order to succeed candidates must relate to the people. They need to show interest in their constituents.The key to any campaign is pairing in person networking and door knocking with all the different social media platforms. You cannot diminish one or the other in this changing society. A combination of both types of interaction is essential to winning campaigns. There are constituents who would rather learn about the candidate via social media – most likely younger generations, and some who would rather hear about the candidate through a phone call, or in person – most likely the older generations. Data and polling can help the candidate with knowing who to reach with the different interactions available that would be most effective.

There are so many different social media platforms to take advantage of in regards to advertising and campaigning. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent more than $1 billion of his own money before dropping out of the race in March. More than 70% of that budget went toward advertising. Taking advantage of the different social media platforms would have helped his campaign and would have saved him a ton of money. “Social Media and Political Contributions: The Impact of New Technology on Political Competition,” states that using social media channels result in receiving a considerable increase in support. These channels “cost next to nothing and are easily tapped by anyone with an internet connection.”
Pinar Yildirim, Maria Petrova, and Ananya Sen communicated in their article Social Media and Electoral Dynamics: Reversing ‘Incumbency Advantage’ in the US that politicians have never been so accessible to the public than the era of social media.

Candidates must take advantage of all the different ways to interact with their voters. People will not connect with the candidate if they do not know the candidate. Social media provides a way to show billions of voters who the candidate is and what they stand for. If a connection is not established properly, it will show on election day.

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Sources:

https://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/how-social-media-is-shaping-political-campaigns
https://www.oberlo.com/blog/social-media-marketing-statistics
https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2836323
https://theglobepost.com/2020/07/24/social-media-politicians/