Segmenting the electorate and delineating a digital strategy based on data is what the candidates look for, based on the possibilities that the surveys show. From the “war room” the candidates for local dignities and team of advisors-foreigners in certain cases-plan the campaign, which as of Tuesday, February 5, will be lived for 45 days.
But the work started at least a year ago, when they chose the aspirants for their charisma or remembrance. In the case of the Social Cristiano- Madera de Guerrero (PSC-MG), the selection of almost 500 candidates only for Pichincha took them two years, although a last-minute decision forced them to change their minds in one of the most relevant positions : The Mayor’s Office of Quito.
Having overcome this, Gabriel Galán, vice president of the PSC in Pichincha, explains that the first step was to train the candidates with the support of experts. Hand in hand the analysis of surveys, most public to avoid expenses. Keep in mind that the fight is tough, beyond the competition, because they face disenchanted voters in politics for the allegations of corruption.
There is also difficulty in connecting with younger people, who interact better in social networks. To shore up the campaign for the Mayor’s Office of Quito, the team was joined by a Brazilian consultancy, “always within the limits of spending imposed by the National Electoral Council.”
Based on his experience, Galán and Fabricio Betancourt Ordóñez, a consultant in Political Marketing, agree that a consultancy can cost from $ 3,500 to $ 100,000 per month, depending on the services provided, the period and the target set. For this reason, Betancourt recommends that a campaign destine for investigation between 15% and 20% of its budget; 60% for advertising; and the rest in other expenses such as logistics.
“The candidates who go first are those who do research, those who go to the queue will be sticking pennants and giving away shirts.” Romel González, political advisor, emphasizes that with gifts and concerts elections are not won. It is essential, he says, to have a campaign manager capable of organizing the team, an expert in communication and political marketing.
In addition, another responsible for logistics and a political adviser to build the electoral proposal, based on the weaknesses and opportunities of the candidate. In the case of the Ecuadorian Union movement, the preparation of the campaign started a year ago.
Santiago Guarderas, aspiring councilor of Quito, recognizes that they work on segmenting their proposal, because while young people think of the lack of job opportunities, others want security and solve the problem of mobility. For this reason they have privileged the work in territory – “policy that will remain in case of being elected” – and with the talent of their mayoral candidate for volleyball, as another campaign strategy, they go through the neighborhoods and share with the people.
However, the experts consulted consider that until now they have seen a very traditional campaign that does not fully exploit the full potential of the digital ecosystem, ignoring the impact of a well-segmented strategy due to the reach of different social networks.
Romel González Lawyer and political advisor
Raise data and design the plan
Each canton has its own characteristics and demands; campaigning in Quito will never be the same as in Jipijapa. So far little discussion of the work agenda, the focus is on the image of the candidate. And we see that the presence of the young candidate has been reduced and the parties bet for characters with political trajectory, a difference with other electoral processes.
Identify the segment of the electorate that identifies with the candidate: youth, women, peasants, fishermen … will be key to, from an information survey, outline an effective strategy. When talking about numbers, the cost of political advice will depend on what it implies: information gathering, management in social networks, design of a strategic plan and the territory in question; even if it is temporary advice to obtain an initial diagnosis.
A comprehensive service can cost from $ 10,000 and up. But digital marketing is turning the tables. There are political actors that lead processes being behind the phone without the need to walk the streets.
Fabricio Betancourt Ordóñez Consultant in Political Marketing
The vote will be pragmatic
Candidates still warm up, but after the wear of the parties the electorate wants a proven politician. The vote will be more pragmatic and the strategy will depend on the polls. It will try to polarize the electorate with a negative campaign that will come from both sides.
But the novelty is that they still do not know the potential of the digital ecosystem and have barely exploited it: email marketing, Google, YouTube, Netflix, Instagram (vanity network), Twitter (hate and revenge network) and Facebook (fun network).
There are also analogue media such as text messages and WhatsApp, which can be used based on adequate data mining, but so far the campaigns are traditional and improvised. According to our measurements, in Quito, when traveling the streets a candidate reaches 500 people, who in 45 days of campaign would be 22,500.
That would be terrible. In the digital environment a candidate grows exponentially his arrival to the voters if he handles creative content. It is necessary to identify where a territorial campaign is necessary and where to use a digital strategy. (I)