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Social media stirs ‘emotional connections’ between candidate and voter — Publicus Asia

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SOCIAL MEDIA presence is not enough to ensure a candidate victory in an election, but it is an effective tool to boost campaign and allow closer connection to the voting public, Publicus Asia reported. In its Final Social Media Intelligence Report (SMIR), released on Thursday, it presented observations on how social media played in the May 2019 midterm elections. “These conclusions point out to the importance of social media, considering more people are engaging with the platform,” Publicus Asia said in a statement. “Any political brand will have to get involved in these activities to expand his/her base and secure wider presence or coverage.”

EMOTIONS
For one, the SMIR found being active in social media alone will not guarantee winning, but a “detailed, well-organized” social media presence can make a candidate more competitive. Further, the report said “social media helps stir emotional connections with voters.” The report cited the cases of now Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” T. Go and losing candidate Willie T. Ong, who ranked 18th in the final count. “Bong Go, who ended up in third place in the election, was consistent in all four categories in SMIR. With a good balance of the President’s endorsement and effective mobilization of social media, Go was able to convert votes with increased virality,” it said. “However, Dr. Willie Ong, who boasts of having a strong social media following in many platforms, was not able to mobilize his online presence well due to lack of air and ground support which is necessary to aid his digital strength.” In assessing social media strength, the SMIR takes into account popularity, virality, exposure and social capacity. — Charmaine A. Tadalan

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