Dr. Politics: Digital Campaign Part II – FACEBOOK AND BLOGS
By Dwight Patel
Last time Dr. Politics covered the importance of a digital campaign plan. Spoke on various social media platforms from Facebook to LinkedIn.
Now let’s focus on Facebook and Blogs.
First create a separate campaign Facebook page. You do that by going to https://www.facebook.com/pages/create/ . You will be at the page with the image display below:
You want to select “Artist, Band or Public Figure.” You will see the prompt below:
Click on Category, then select from dropdown, “Political Candidate”
Select your name or the name of your campaign committee, I’d recommend Name of Committee. However, you can use your name if you’d like. Important: Don’t forget to insert Authority Line on your official candidate Facebook Page.
Select “Get Started”
This will take you to below page
This is a fictional page for John Blackstar (Those of us from the ‘80s know that John Blackstar was a cartoon character)
“J Yellow” Box click on the Camera icon. This will allow you to upload your photograph or campaign logo. I again would recommend using your photograph and use the logo for the “Grey” box which is circled in blue. Click the “Add a Cover” button to upload your logo or a group shot of your campaign at a parade or something like that. I’d use my campaign logo initially or a picture with your logo (will cover graphics in a later issue of Dr. Politics). Finally, you should add a page name, use your name or your name plus office. This will make it easier to direct people to your FB page Facebook.com/JohnBlackStarForSenate
Your page should now look similar to John Blackstar’s page.
Now that your page has been created, send invites to all of your friends, and have them like your page. This page should be used to tell your story, publicize your issues, events and other campaign events. However, keep in mind this isn’t a substitute for a campaign website.
Once your Facebook page is complete and you have your important information like your issues, events and a few posts, you should consider doing a small targeted ad buy which will target only FB members from your district. This means only people who are in your district will see the ad, (If you are running in Bethesda, your friends in Baltimore will never see the ad, unless you live in MD-3, the most gerrymandered district in America). The way this is done is to purchase email lists of registered Republicans and run it against a service that identifies FB members from your district.
How much should you spend on Facebook ads?
I would recommend starting with a small $250.00 ad buy. Test it out for a few weeks, and see if this moves the needle. You will get likes from people in your district as opposed to the traditional FB ad where you can get anyone from the guy down the street from you to the guy living in Timbuktu. A guy or gal in Timbuktu liking your page does nothing for you, i.e. he can’t even donate to your campaign (unless he is an US citizen living in Timbuktu, but honestly what are the odds?)
You also want to take advantage of Facebook live to drive traffic to your site. Facebook pushes Facebook Live videos to the top of newsfeeds. Practice the Facebook live — Don’t just do it off the cuff unless your name is Jerry Cave. He is the only one in know who can do great Facebook Live videos without practice. I’d highly recommend reaching out to Jerry Cave and hire him as your media coach for your Facebook Live and Podcasts (we will talk more about podcasts next week)
Now that your Facebook campaign is up and running, let’s turn to a Blog for your campaign.
What is a campaign blog? Why do I need a blog?
A campaign Blog is designed to get your message out to your audience without filters from the leftwing media. Also, it allows for you to connect with your supporters directly. You should update your blog 2 or 3 times per week. You can do something really simple like “We just had a great fundraiser with Gov. Hogan,” to putting up your vision for your district.
You need the blog to get your story out. The Washington Post won’t be knocking on your door to do a story on you, and most local papers won’t pay attention until after the primary. You can also use your blog to go after your opponent and other bloggers who are out there and make it a habit to knock down our candidates.
Okay, we have covered the importance of a Facebook page and how to use it to tailor your message, along with a blog. I know I have covered a lot of ground. If you would like additional information, feel free to drop me an email at [email protected] I’d be happy to take time and talk to you about your digital strategies, or any other campaign strategies. Furthermore, I can also put you in touch with some of the other political architects.
Here is a checklist of what you need to do:
- Get your Domain first. In the past, bloggers and other candidates have squat domains of candidates. So, get your domain first.
- Get your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram handle. What is a Handle? It’s the @JohnBlackstarForSenate. You want to try and use the same one for FB, Instagram and Twitter, so that when you promote, you can just use @JohnBlackstarForSenate, then just use the social icons.
- Get a smart phone (I recommend the Apple Iphone 7+. It has the best camera that rivals my Nikon D800 quality pictures). Tie your twitter, Facebook and Instagram with your phone so you can tweet, do Facebook live and upload photos to Instagram in the moment.
We will cover the other components of a digital campaign plan by looking at Instagram and twitter. Follow me at @DwightNATION. AS ALWAYS YOU CAN READ MY COLUMNS AT MCGOP.COM/DR-POLITICS OR AT DWIGHTNATION.COM OR NOW AT POLITICALARCHITECTS.COM