THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Telecom companies and startup firms in the state have launched innovative SMS-based ready-reckoner in a bid to woo voters through brand building for candidates. Though bulk SMS and voice call services were introduced long back in the state, SMS promotion service providers now bank on the latest technology and innovative products to remain relevant.
The new strategies include soliciting active participation of voters in the campaign and creating a strong bonding between candidates and voters by addressing their issues. Several telecom outsourcing firms in Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram have already developed new formats for SMS marketing which enable candidates and voters to interact digitally. “Though we have been doing this business for many years, innovative ideas can change the scale of business and ensure a strong client base. Importantly, it is a brand building technique rather than conversion of the SMS-for-vote strategy. Hence, we have zeroed in on a technique to increase the personal bonding between candidates and voters. Five candidates from across the state have approached us through our ‘re-sellers.’ Two of them have shown interest in using the new technique,” said Anand Krishnan, Operations GM, Eben Telecom, Kochi.
The new SMS service will gives stress to voter-candidate interaction. Voters can type the first three letters of the name of the candidate, write the major issues faced by them - in limited words - and send SMS to 9645221221. When the candidate receives the SMS, he/she can highlight the issue in their campaign. There is a provision for candidates to send acknowledgement SMS to voters.
“For example, if the problem faced by voters is potholed roads, they can send SMS alert on the issue so that candidates of all parties could highlight it in their poll campaign.
Unlike voice calls, SMS messages serve as a test of the credibility of candidates as all the messages will be stored in the server. The process, which has only begun, will be implemented as campaigning gathers momentum in the coming days,” said Anand.
A Thiruvananthapuram-based technology firm said it would soon launch an offline Twitter-like social networking tool in response to requests made by a few candidates.
The tool will allow a voter to follow a candidate by clicking on the invitation message. Once the voter starts following the candidate, the former will get updates on the progress of the campaign.
“We are in the process of popularising our idea among candidates in all constituencies. The application, which is in the final stage of development, will be introduced soon,” said Ivisko Ventures chief executive officer N Kiran Kumar.