KOCHI: In the digital era, there is a group of professionals too that reaps gold, cashing in on the campaign blitzkrieg. Realising the role of professionals in connecting to the target audience, candidates of mainstream political parties are increasingly relying on public relations (PR) agencies to improve their visibility in the campaign sphere. According to a PR agency, each candidate is engaging an agency spending
Rs 2.5 lakh-Rs 5 lakh to spread the word and boost his/her image during the month-long campaign. Agencies that handle social media campaigns also are offered Rs 8 - Rs10 lakh for the job.“Politicians have realised the importance of innovative marketing strategies in the highly competitive world, which has prompted them to turn to us.
Our responsibilities include delivering daily press notes and photographs of candidates to the media, informing the candidates about potential avenues and generating interesting news stories which will help the candidates to strike the right chord with voters,” said an employee at a leading PR agency in Kochi.
Hibi, Rajeev and Innocent hire PR firms
Earlier, it was the senior party workers who used to coordinate between the candidate and the media. The rise of the new media has increased the impact of news reports, which has prompted the candidates to rely on professionals to connect with people. “We have to prepare news stories that help the candidates target various segments. Our people accompany candidates during campaign and prepare interesting stories that will help leverage their image. We try to spread the word of mouth and create a perception the candidate is a person who delivers,” said a PR agency owner.
UDF candidate in Ernakulam, Hibi Eden, LDF candidate P Rajeev and LDF candidate in Chalakudy, Innocent, have hired leading PR agencies to run the campaigns. The agencies handling social media use platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube to connect with the voters. Their job is to establish trust and credibility among voters while countering the campaigns by rivals.