Never PR a Scot

A campaign that simplifies a complex issue, personalizes benefits and uses simple and popular imagery is bound to succeed, right?

On 18 September Scots will vote to decide if Scotland should be independent of the UK.

Those for the status quo argue Scots will be better off if they elect to remain with Great Britain. Last Wednesday Her Majesty’s Treasury published an analysis estimating every Scot will be 1400 pounds better off by staying with the UK.

They followed up with 12 examples of how a Scot could spend that extra money, illustrating each option with Lego figures in cartoon-like situations.
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Social media in politics: does it work?

Do political campaigns live up to the promise of digital technology?  

Professor Jenny Stromer-Galley, Associate Professor at Syracuse University, explores this in her book ‘Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age’.  She concludes digital is pushing politicians to reconsider how they reach and involve people yet there is still a long way to go.

Obama’s presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2014 showed the technical infrastructure to shrink the distance between candidate and community is with us now. The social media platforms we use every day offer the chance for electors to be more involved in the political process.  Never before have voters had access to so much information to share, re-interpret, re-purpose and organise. 

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Ban politicians from social media

Leaders using social media to connect

Leaders using social media to connect

Let’s be cautious about proclaiming social media as a force for democracy even in Western societies.

Should we ban politicians from social media and content marketing for the sake of transparency?

I’m a content marketing fan.  But there are dangers when governments use content marketing to go direct to voters. It may be attractive for Ministers to craft content and use social media to release information, but essentially what they release is a formulaic, sanitized version of events.

The core of the content marketing movement is directly engaging people of interest to you.  It is easy to see why that would appeal to bureaucracies. 

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World Leaders embrace Twitter

The latest report of the Digital Policy Council shows 123 out 164 countries and three out of four heads of state have now embraced Twitter.

In the last 12 months US President Barack Obama was the biggest mover in the Twittersphere.  He occupies # 1 spot gaining 16 million followers this past year.  The number of people who now follow him exceeds 40 million.

Since the 2008 Presidential Election, Obama has always been comfortable with social media.  However a noticeable upturn in his numbers occurred when the US Government shut down in September last year.  Obama joined other politicians and citizens to tweet his frustrations about the situation.

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Who do Australians trust?

Trust-Around-the-WorldTrust is critical in content marketing, or for that matter in any form of communications. The Edelman Trust Barometer is an annual, global survey showing who people trust. 

The 2014 Australian results are interesting.  Compared to last year Australians seem to be more trusting. Specifically our trust in:

  • Not for profits is marginally up.
  • Media is up six points.
  • Business has taken a 10 point leap in trust levels.
  • There is a higher level of trust in government.

Interestingly Australians trust business slightly more than they trust their governments. 

The global survey finds people want CEOs to communicate in a clear and transparent fashion, tell the truth regardless of the situation and regularly engage with their workers. 

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