Our guest editor series highlights unique perspectives from leaders in the marketing industry. As the 2016 elections heat up, we asked political consultants Julie Hootkin of Global Strategy Group and Frank Luntz of Luntz Global Partners to share how marketing know-how is helping them advise clients.
As pollsters and political consultants, it's our job to understand what voters truly care about and leverage those insights to create awareness and build support. Just like brand marketers, we have to look closely at key audiences and find out how to engage them. And right now, online video and digital media are playing a huge role in the 2016 elections. As the Republican and Democratic conventions get closer, here are our thoughts on articles that showcase efficient and effective strategies for both marketing and political campaigns.
On mobile ...
Julie: TV advertising is a good way to introduce candidates and issues, but it can also leave voters wanting more. Now, with their smartphones in hand, they can fact-check something they saw on TV or learn more about candidates and their positions. These second-screen moments give all types of campaigns incredible opportunities to tell a story across all channels and meet people when they are in their most active, information-seeking mode.
On video marketing ...
Frank: With a 24/7 news cycle and the ubiquity of smartphones, campaigns are competing to capture momentum. Online video gives candidates the opportunity to do just that—build momentum by being there when voters are looking to get informed and make a decision. It's critical for campaigns to identify the moments that matter most to voters and build a political strategy to communicate the right information, at the right time, and on the right platform.
On large cultural events ...
Julie: Much like the Olympics, the elections present marketers with an opportunity to expand their audience and connect to a "big moment." Wading into the political conversation can be intimidating, but the benefits for a brand can be substantial. By engaging with consumers on the issues that matter to them, both brands and candidates have the opportunity to boost their reputations.
On YouTube's political influence ...
Frank: Voters will watch content that matters to them—regardless of length. They want what they call the "whole story." And YouTube is their go-to resource to find unedited clips of debates, discussions of complex issues, humorous candidate sit-downs, and everything in between.
As the campaigns enter the next phase of this election cycle, we know the stakes will be even higher. That means every candidate has to get their communications strategy just right. We hope this also gets you thinking about the opportunities ahead for your brand and your digital campaigns.
Julie Hootkin and Frank Luntz
For more of Julie's and Frank's perspectives, especially about voter behavior online, check out "What Marketers Can Learn From the Latest Data About Voter Behavior Online."