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News & Views from Alchemis

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Election Fever

The election campaign is gathering momentum and the Tories have shown their campaign intent (following the poorly received airbrushed posters) by hiring M&C Saatchi to work alongside their main agency, Euro RSCG and going head to head with Labour’s Saatchi & Saatchi.

In the article, “Time for some brutal simplicity in election fight”, Gideon Spanier reaffirms this deliberate act of campaigning aggression from the Conservative party, with M&C stating that they want to “tear lumps out of the Prime Minister”.

This is standard campaign bravado, but the interesting question raised is how the election will be fought and won. Martin Sorrell highlights the importance of an integrated campaign as the key to Obama’s election success in the US, getting the same message across online, outdoor and on TV. Spanier highlights the relevant benefits of each, with outdoor/TV advertising as well as television appearances remaining a big influence.

For me, the interesting aspect will be how each party embrace the internet. Over the past four years, the rise of digital, multi-channel and social media give a new edge to the election battle, providing wider access to different voting demographics.

Used well, digital communications could unlock a bank of voters who may otherwise not see or hear key messages, but used badly, the internet and social platforms allow for immediate mocking and spoofing of campaign images and messages (as happened with Cameron’s “we can’t go on like this” campaign). Not only is this a fascinating area for the current election, but a successful digital strategy to a younger audience could also be achieving party support and advocacy for the future from those unable to vote in this election.

We’ll leave the campaigning to the experts, but at Alchemis we will be following the party activity closely over the coming months and commenting through our blog. Any outside views and opinions would be welcomed.

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