How Indian Elections Buzz in The Internet Era

Indian Elections are in full swing and Indian politicians have changed the way they are communicating with the Indian public to draw votes for the elections 2009. The new Internet has changed the way an informed electorate goes to vote…

1. Online Advertising – You can easily spot major political parties running Google Adwords campaigns which run via Adsense ads across millions of sites. A month back most of our site pages showed these ads only for Indian visitors, meaning they were targeting with a huge budget on lots of broad keywords.

bjp adscongress ads

2. Mobile SMS – Everyday I am getting many SMS messages from politicians in my constituency on my mobile phone. Bulk mobile number lists are easily available for sale at cheap rates in India. Bulk SMS rates have got even more cheaper than before, and the promotion directly reach the individual mobiles which is really targeted. How they bypass the Do Not Call registry, I can’t figure that out.

3. Social Networking – Most political leaders have developed a Facebook presence to get personal with the voters (see the Congress India page). Twitter is a rage in the election scenario too with many political parties are twittering away with their fans (Find @bjp_ on Twitter), though it is often difficult to establish if its the official one. You can also find many fan groups and local leaders active on other social networking sites like Orkut. Obama had used Twitter successfully to tap the voters.

4. Online Videos – As broadband internet has spread throughout India, online videos have become popular media and politicians are using video sharing sites like Youtube for maximum propaganda and voter reach. See how BJP Channel on Youtube keeps uploading new insider videos.

5. Blogging – Many politicians have blogs via which they are directly communicating with the electorate (like LK Advani’s blog). Blogs allow leaders to directly express their views and communicate with voters on a personal basis, bypassing the party pages.

6. Old & New Join Hands – Big online giants like Google pitched in to track the Indian elections and partner with old media giants like Hindustan Times to bring up to date information about Indian elections. More tie-ups between new and old media are the future.

7. Celebrity Buzz – More and more Indian celebrities pitched in to encourage voters to vote and select the right people to form the government. See the initiative below (Hindi) –

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