What The 2016 Presidential Campaign Has Taught Content Marketers
11
OCTOBER 2016

The 2016 presidential race is what everyone’s talking about! We’ve all heard the debates, the stats, the rumors, the accusations and much more. But apart from the well-organized political game and the show that’s being put on stage, going deeper beneath the surface, what can this campaign in particular teach others who are looking to craft their own content marketing campaigns? And is the one we’re currently experiencing really a good example, or just a satirical display?

No matter your political colors, we can all agree that a political campaign, especially a presidential one is a beautifully executed and orchestrated spectacle, designed to engage and delight, move and impress.  Usually the people behind it are many, from the speech writers, to the event planners, to the organizers, the advertisers and the PR people. However, the main character is rarely part of this complex display, and yet, just like with any rock band, they are still the image of the whole performance.

But what are really some of the most important things that presidential campaign managers take into consideration when preparing such a monumental mise en scene?

  • Of course, the discourse presented to the public is vital. A winning speech needs to inspire and move millions, be as great a call to arms just like Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. After all, you’re not just engaging with some random strangers, you’re gathering an ‘army’ that will follow you and fight for your ideas for the foreseeable future.
  • Campaign funds – money does make the world go round, especially in the world of politics. And the 2016 nominees seem to prove that at every turn!
  • Even the adversaries might prove to be useful, if handled correctly. We’ve all seen the way the current runners are using the other’s weaknesses to their advantage.

“A winning speech needs to inspire and move millions, be as great a call to arms just like Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. After all, you’re not just engaging with some random strangers, you’re gathering an ‘army’ that will follow you and fight for your ideas for the foreseeable future.”

Unfortunately, the current campaign seems to lag behind other nominees of the past. With the media analyzing every new movement on this front, the things we’ve seen thus far are not really encouraging. More than that, with the candidates’ quaint background and even more colorful personalities, the ruffled feathers are flying everywhere. As a matter of fact, The Washington Post described the 2016 campaign as being “filled with questionable statements and attacks of every nature.”

Content marketing campaign tips

OK, so this year might not be filled with wisdom and hope as always, but if we were to analyze a serious presidential debate, what would it deem useful for a great content marketing campaign? Just like with any self-respecting political campaign, some key elements need to be well crafted and attended to in order to achieve success! A simple Google search will inform you that there are many techniques that can help you achieve a top marketing campaign. To help you along with the research, here are some of the main elements that are always highlighted:

  • First thing’s first: the audience!

To be honest, what isn’t motivated by an audience today, in an online world, where we’re all connected and most of our lives are under public scrutiny? Therefore, the people you’re writing for are always the most important ones! What are they looking for? What can you deliver that is unique and interesting? How would you react in their shoes?

  • Second: what are your goals?

What are you trying to achieve through this campaign? You will need a plan, complete with bullet points and strategies to achieve each objective. Every good thing comes from preparation and back-up options, strategically put in place. This might include analytics for your site or blog, email services, contributors, any back-up software you might need, review of your previous material, outside input and so on. A well-planned operation is always the best way to achieve your goal, just ask any general!

  • The competition

Who are they and what are the points where you could outshine them? Knowing your enemy is indeed useful advice, no matter what you’re trying to achieve. What is working for them and what isn’t? Learning from mistakes is always useful, be them yours or other people’s!

  • Be constant and gather as much data as possible

Try to stick to some sort of schedule, form and tone. These can vary over time, depending on the feedback you receive, but avoid letting your ideas sway all over the place. Consistency helps people keep track of your philosophies and even get familiarized with your views. Using such reviews as input, see what works and where you could use more work.

Of course, this is useful advice in the form of political tips and tricks, but when it comes to the current duo duking it out for the ultimate position, how much of what they’ve shown us thus far can be seen as beneficial information?

First of all, we know their stance with the audience, and let’s say it’s less than flattering sometimes. We can also see the loopholes in their not-so-masterfully crafted speeches, and we can understand that the expression ‘heads will roll’ is taken a little too seriously sometimes. And if that’s not enough, the sins of the past seem to keep hanging around them, somehow making their promises for the future appear a little less trustworthy.

All in all, a presidential campaign should be a wonderful symphony, interpreted by a very articulate artiste. There is much to learn from such a manifestation, especially for someone focused on content marketing campaigns. But this year our magnified expectations have been severely deflated. This year we’ve learned that the lead singer is definitely not always worthy of all the fame, and that the true craftsmanship is in the background details. The eye of the world is watching and it is rarely forgiving. And with such prime examples on display, is the good really outweighing the bad?

Annie Ianko

Content Happiness Advisor

Annie has 18 years’ experience as an editor and content creator and manager. With work in television and written media, she has dedicated her past 10 years to learning the ropes of online content creation, from writing to editing, from SEO to content management.

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