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The Importance Of Public Perception For Electoral Campaigns
Public opinion can be defined as what the public thinks about a particular issue, individual or party or political figure. Previously, it used to be extremely difficult to accurately measure the opinion of the masses on issue. However now, public opinion plays a crucial role in the working of the government. Democracies run on the understanding that the government functions keeping the interest of the people in mind.
Hence in the case of public advocacy campaigns, since we are in a democracy, it is vital that public opinion is constantly monitored. Companies and parties opt for Public Relations to not only monitor but also create multi-faceted strategies to help their campaign be more effective. In current times, mass media has played a major role in helping form public opinions. Mass media is believed to be the medium by which the message of opinion leaders reaches the public.
When it comes to public advocacy campaigns, since it is the public that selects the leader the party must take the time to understand their target audience. Proper research needs to be conducted to help the party understand the expectations ...
... and needs of the public and develop a campaign around it. With a number of parties campaigning at the same time, the need to understand the thought process of the target audience is what increases the party’s chance at winning the election. One of the best examples of how a party used public perception along with social media to win the election is Narendra Modi’s Prime Minister Campaign.
Narendra Modi and his team had been active on social media since the year 2009. However, when BJP declared him to be their Prime Minister candidate, their presence online grew greatly. Social media was used not only to talk about his achievement in Gujarat but also about every voter’s right. Programmes such as Chai Pe Charcha which led to live interaction were also created to allow voters of lower income groups to interact with him. BJP made use of many advertising gurus of the industry who constructed the famous taglines which were used in both their online and offline media. ‘Janta Maaf Nahi Karegi’, ‘Acche Din Aane Waale Hai’ and ‘Akki Baar Modi Sarkar’ are some of the famous campaigns which were on the tongues of the entire voter base.
From this example we can see that public perception plays a major role during public advocacy movement. To win, it is important to understand the voters’ needs and use different mediums to get through to them. The NaMo campaign which most voters remember to this day is testament to the fact that public perception cannot be ignored.
About the Author
Akansh Malik writes this article to discuss the importance public perception holds in this electoral campaign. He explains why every political party must take the time out to understand the needs and wants of the public. It is after all the public who selects the leader by voting for him. Hence any public advocacy campaign should focus on promising the public to meet their needs. It is only with the help of a strong public advocacy plan can any party win the elections.
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