The drums of the political dance have been sounded and the selling of manifestos and publicizing of dream teams has begun in earnest. At the heart of any political campaign is messaging and communication. Traditional media has become fragmented following the drive towards digital and the numbers outside those given by research pundits are hard to verify independently. Notwithstanding media houses usually have an unspoken leaning to one side and as such it is near impossible to rely on a balanced communication of any defensible development agenda if one is not aligned.
At the core of any political win is a smart communication strategy that can be measured from direct ROI and not estimates based on random sampling. For the incumbent and newbie alike, technology is a levelizer that can deliver a much coveted seat and plug loopholes that have in the past seen many candidates and parties hemorrhage valuable funds from lack of visibility on investment versus return.
The business of politics has its target consumer, the citizenry who must be engaged through best practice tactics. With the Communication Authority of Kenya and mobile operators ever more vigilant on the abuse of communications systems, a candidate must have auditable communications which capture, time, date, medium and message. No more purchasing of mobile money ledgers, unverified IEBC databases or the heavily peddled email lists.
Every action should lead to a transaction. Transaction here need not be monetary but could a data exchange that completes the profile of an onboarded target customer or a consideration that tips the decision to engage in your favor. Every single action or event that could add value to a party or individual campaign is now trackable with end to end audit possible.
The channels of engagement outside traditional radio, tv and newspapers are many and provide scaffolding that can support personalized engagements with one person or with one million. The missing component where audiences may have already been onboarded is metadata that would enrich the personality profiles of the target electorate lending more oomph to any interaction. Metadata would allow you to sit in the mind of the electorate and tailor both proposition and promise.
Many would argue that politics is a sloth that doesn’t move fast to adapt to new ways of work, but I believe the tide has turned and the entry of both youthful and corporate trained digital immigrants into the field will see the use of a different way that may catch incumbents off guard.
Let the games begin.