Did The Conservatives Miss a Social Media and Marketing Trick?

 

Posted on Jun 12, 2017

So the election is won by the Conservatives, but lost! Labour may not have won the election but their aim to appeal to young voters was without doubt a success. In fact, a survey taken said two-thirds of young people voted Labour with the main concern being about Brexit. This was achieved by their enthusiasm with the social media campaigns created. Compared to the Conservatives, Labour used a wider spread of social media tools in order to attract 18-25 year olds to vote for them.

On Facebook, Twitter and Instagram the Labour Party's Marketing helped them gain 1.3M fans/followers whereas the Conservatives have gained just 848K. Furthermore, within the largest platform for both parties, Facebook, since the election was called Labour has seen a 61% increase in followers (from 540K to 868K), compared to the Conservatives only seeing a 6% increase (from 564K to 596K). Moreover, as well as the increase in followers, Labour also gained a much higher level of engagement on Facebook which is crucial. Additionally, Labour posted around 30 posts a day on Facebook whereas, the Conservatives only posted 10-20 which can make a huge difference in a short space of time due to the amount of times 18-25 years olds use their smartphones per day.

Molly Oven said, “whilst studying at University I became aware that the majority of students who voted for Labour, did so due to the conversational style and relatable information rather than the ‘facts’ within the Manifesto.”

The most important technique Labour seemed to master was the type of messages displayed across different social media platforms. In contrast to the Conservatives, Labour used positive messages, which were policy-focused and related to 18-25 years olds. The relevant communication to young voters was consistent throughout digital media and included information such as University fees whereas; the Conservatives were attacking Labour with their messages, which were being ignored due to the inappropriate information. Social media is a community and therefore negative messages about others do not evoke the emotion of being together, which therefore results in fewer votes.

Labour’s wide use of digital marketing and media tools includes the creation of a Facebook frame. Similarly to when the Manchester attacks took place, imagery is created which can be displayed on top of any profile picture temporarily (shown below). This is a great Marketing technique used because the image change comes up on every newsfeed, resulting in others becoming aware of how the individual is voting which may influence their decision. Comparably, on the day of the election, there was a Snapchat filter created whereby users could show their followers that they would be voting for Labour (shown below). Also, even though a lot of money was spent on the hashtag, #forthemany, which Labour used running up to the election, it does appear to have played a significant role in their performance and therefore, justifies the expense.

While the Conservatives did have some sponsored advertisements on both Facebook and Twitter, they were not as engaging to young voters due to the information not relating to them. Consequently, this has had a huge impact on the outcome of the election because 18-25 year olds are influenced by social media propaganda and ads. The Conservatives increased their share of the vote to 42%, which in any other election in the past three decades would have been enough to build a commanding majority, however due to the young voters being influenced by the social media strategy, this time it was not enough. It is time for the Conservatives to expand their digital marketing and media campaigns and show young voters that they have a lot offer.

 

The most important technique Labour seemed to master was the type of messages displayed across different social media platforms. In contrast to the Conservatives, Labour used positive messages, which were policy-focused and related to 18-25 years olds. The relevant communication to young voters was consistent throughout digital media and included information such as University fees whereas; the Conservatives were attacking Labour with their messages, which were being ignored due to the inappropriate information. Social media is a community and therefore negative messages about others do not evoke the emotion of being together, which therefore results in fewer votes.

Labour’s wide use of digital marketing and media tools includes the creation of a Facebook frame. Similarly to when the Manchester attacks took place, imagery is created which can be displayed on top of any profile picture temporarily (shown below). This is a great Marketing technique used because the image change comes up on every newsfeed, resulting in others becoming aware of how the individual is voting which may influence their decision. Comparably, on the day of the election, there was a Snapchat filter created whereby users could show their followers that they would be voting for Labour (shown below). Also, even though a lot of money was spent on the hashtag, #forthemany, which Labour used running up to the election, it does appear to have played a significant role in their performance and therefore, justifies the expense.

While the Conservatives did have some sponsored advertisements on both Facebook and Twitter, they were not as engaging to young voters due to the information not relating to them. Consequently, this has had a huge impact on the outcome of the election because 18-25 year olds are influenced by social media propaganda and ads. The Conservatives increased their share of the vote to 42%, which in any other election in the past three decades would have been enough to build a commanding majority, however due to the young voters being influenced by the social media strategy, this time it was not enough. It is time for the Conservatives to expand their digital marketing and media campaigns and show young voters that they have a lot offer.