7 Contemporary Trends in Election Campaigns

7 Contemporary Trends in Election Campaigns

                 The nature of politics and elections have many facets which in turn impacts the larger society we inhabit. Indian democracy has been a witness to the rise and fall of many leaders over the years. Many elections have shaped destinies of political parties for the good and bad. Elections have also been a big battleground among political leaders, in India. There is a lot of work which goes on behind an election process. Big teams work round the clock carrying out campaign objectives for political parties which is just not easy. There are various political parties with different ideologies competing in the national arena during elections. The battles are big and conflicting at times which creates a distorted image of the whole political narrative. The voter is always puzzled with the narrative being given out in the media.  Thus, election campaigns are carried out with finesse by many political consulting agencies. A great campaign strategy is required to build that trust. To strike a consensus and perception in the minds of various voters can be a challenging task for any political party. Today, there are many new trends emerging in election campaigning-

  • Today there is a huge polarization of the political landscape in India. It isn’t surprising looking at the scams and crises which unfolds every day. Gender, age and geography also contribute to this process of polarization. Many conflicts cut across ideologies creating a whole new debate in the public domain. Voters tend to lose trust in political parties due to many reasons. In our country, there is an ever-increasing trend like this in the existing political environment. Election campaigns are carried out keeping this aspect in mind, to make sure that a specific party does not lose grip over its constituencies. Public opinion and Crisis management have become a new trend while carrying out campaign objectives for any client.
  • Another aspect of politics is the ever-increasing volatile environment of the electorate. Most developing countries face this issue. In India, this phenomenon is always present, hence, parties tend to lose their vote share on specific issues. There has to be an effective strategy in campaign management so that there can be damage control on major problems. A voter can change his mind in a minute and the perception formed can create havoc. Hence, a campaign’s aim is no longer directed at the loyal voters. Political parties have to constantly re-invent themselves and manage voter base effectively. This conflict and perception battle among voters is another recent trend in election campaign management.
  • In politics, public opinion plays an important role in the results of an election. Hence, public opinion research is the latest trend on which campaigns are executed. Market research teams in political consulting firms carry out survey research to understand voter behavior and mindset. The research design and data analysis give a whole new perspective on public opinion which helps political parties understand their constituencies in a better way. This can influence the strategy in a big way, especially on the ground.
  • Another latest trend in election campaigning is the focus on the personalities of different leaders. The pros and cons of characteristics between leaders is another trend that voters like to choose from. Many a time, a leader might have flaws but people overlook these flaws for traits that make up for a good leader. A strong leader might well be forgiven for many of his flaws while contesting elections. Voters choose authenticity and originality which play to the emotions in the minds of various citizens. Any campaign strategy would have to keep this aspect in mind and political firms use this to counter another party’s negative opinion compared to the leader whom they project as strong.
  • The digital effectiveness in campaigning is another predominant strategy. Many people might think that social media doesn’t have an impact on campaigning but they are wrong. Social media is a powerful tool to reach out to many voters especially millennials. A huge chunk of voters are millennials today. A social media impact can do wonders for any campaign strategy. This is another trend that political consulting firms do not ignore.
  • Every election brings out new trends in voter behavior. Today, many voters choose leaders who are able to govern rather than those who belong to political families. Also, the youth use a different yardstick while choosing their leader. Many leaders have brought about changes that leaders from royal families don’t. A unique pedigree is built around that political party because of such leaders. Campaign strategists focus on this aspect too which is a new trend in elections. This can be a signature mark for any leader who wishes to contest.
  • Today negative publicity or campaigning by an opponent can damage a client’s reputation in the media. A constant harping of an issue in the media becomes established as truth. This is a very dangerous trend as a media trail can create havoc on political careers. Political agencies during elections are always on the guard of negative campaigning effects while providing a positive narrative around their respective party or leader. There is always a perception management battle happening behind the scenes.

 

 

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