Apr.03

Promoting Brand Arvind Kejriwal Through Social Media

Arvind Kejriwal is a quick learner, he initially copied the BJP’s game of social media and politics and taught them how it should be done. Arvind Kejriwal and AAP used all possible social media channels and just not Facebook and Twitter. AAP also used Quora for answering questions, Mango App for broadcasting speeches and messages and YouTube channel like TVF.

Arvind Kejriwal also managed to create an impression of a brand which shares every possible detail with its audience. He chose to use social media to communicate with his audience. The website of Aam Aadmi Party clearly highlights details of every funding they receive, doesn’t matter how small the amount is. This level of transparency and honesty helped AAP in winning the trust of people. AAP with its image of honest and transparent party managed to attract huge followers with a mere funding of INR 20 crores. These followers were just not following various Facebook and twitter accounts but were active and engaged. It will not be wrong to say that they were active digital volunteers for the party.

Arvind Kejriwal was successful in transitioning the followers of Anna’s movement to AAP supporters. This transition helped Arvind Kejriwal in developing a strong brand and huge political following. A small investment on the social media helped AAP and Arvind kejriwal win huge engaged followers base on Facebook and Twitter.  This was also possible because of the correct communication strategy used by team AAP and Arvind kejriwal.

It is very important for any successful personal brand to understand that they need to communicate with their audience in the language of the audience, at the medium of audiences’ choice. If it’s not managed well the whole communication plan will be of no use. Arvind Kejriwal, from the very beginning clearly understood the pain points of the masses and in his every communication he touched the pain point effectively. The success of Arvind Kejriwal’s communication strategy can be seen in the social media engagement score. In general, the success on social media is measured by the number of followers or likes, but Arvind Kejriwal clearly proved that people engagement is actually the true measure of success.

The good thing that happened for the Arvind Kejriwal’s story is building of a brand around the story of ‘Power of Common Man’. As common man started trusting and associating with the leader they genuinely followed him and started engaging with him on social media platforms. The followers or likes were not bought by running promotional campaigns. These followers or likes were genuine advocates of brand Arvind Kejriwal.

Arvnd Kejriwal and AAP took the engagement to the next level for the voters of Delhi. They launched a page called Delhi Dialogue for the voters of the Delhi.  The voters of Delhi could share their views on governance in Delhi, facilities they want, issues they face, solution they seek, etc. The major views from the voters of Delhi, were taken into consideration while writing the AAP’s election manifesto.  The voters of Delhi loved the Manifesto as they saw their views were captured in it.  This was yet another classic success of engaging voters on social media and making them feel they are part of decision making.

Arvind Kejriwal’s popularity and positive image nosedived after he joined hands with congress to form his first government, and walked out of the government in 49 days. He was criticised by established political parties and was shamed by calling politics of ‘shoot and scoot’, ‘hit and run’, ‘name and shame’. Arvind Kejriwal’s guerrilla tactics have shaken the political class when he decided to renew his campaign by offering a sincere apology to people through his Facebook and Twitter pages. The apologies note was widely shared and retweeted. This apology note helped Arvind and AAP come back in the race. The script – ‘Power of Common Man’ worked once again.  The voters were shown the human and honest side of the politician, which they had not expected from any political leader. This social experiment on social media worked well for Arvind Kejriwal proving that social media and politics go hand in hand.

Arvind Kejriwal and the AAP openly declared war against the other parties on social media. They used Twitter hashtags as weapons. The classic example is the #mufflerman hashtag which was created by opposition to mock Arvind was used effectively by the social media team of AAP to put pro-AAP tweets and turned into a weapon which trended for over 14 days.

AAP kept a close watch on the voter sentiments through social media & other means & continuously modified their campaign tactics and strategy thereby running a very cost effective campaign against well-funded campaigns of the BJP.

The other major social media communication success was sentiment analysis for studying thousands of Twitter and Facebook accounts of AAP followers, BJP followers and Neutrals to politics.  This exercise helped Arvind Kejriwal keep the tone of messaging right. It also helped them in modifying the communication as and when needed.

The social media sentiment analysis helped them understand the groundswell and develop positive and pro-party messaging. The message also worked well as they were not mocking messaging or hate politics messaging. The communication was loved by people because voters were getting what they wanted.

Arvind Kejriwal, the front man of AAP, made it clear in every communication that if they find their team members indulging in corruption they would straight away cancel his/her election ticket. And, such incidents did happen when people reported to AAP authorities that some of their candidates are corrupt, and in the response, AAP cancelled their assembly tickets

Politics

Feb.15

Making of Brand Arvind Kejriwal

It will not be wrong to say that politics in India is all about mathematics of emotion, and storytelling. We Indians believed in the script – ‘Power of Common Man’. India has witnessed rise of many common men into huge political leaders using the script – ‘Power of Common Man’. There are many mass leaders viz. Lalu Prasad Yadav, Mamta Banarjee, Mayawati, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Deve Gowda who have built huge followers base on the story line – ‘Power of Common Man’. The latest in the list is Arvind Kejriwal. Not only he used the story line ‘Power of Common Man’ effectively but he also took the script to the next level.

The success of AAP and Arvind Kejriwal in the Indian politics can be attributed to an anti-congress wave and the fatigue among the middle class with a persistent corruption problem. It was the time when the educated middle class was frustrated as they found themselves politically exploited, fooled and marginalized. Indian voters who always believed in the ‘Power of Common Man’ was witnessing rise of caste-based politics, politics around religious issues, etc. Arvind Kejriwal had make use of the situation to their advantage and created a mass movement against the corruption with help of mass movement India Against Corruption. The anti-corruption movement India Against Corruption became the genesis of political party AAP.

Arvind Kejriwal is a master story teller. He is one who not only scripted the story very well but also executed each part of it with all honesty and sincerity. The story of ‘Power of Common Man’, is no new story for Indian voters, this story was told to Indian voters in the past and this time the story was shared with Indian voters by Arvind Kejriwal. This new story helped Arvind Kejriwal build the brand “Arvind Kejriwal”.

The journey of brand Arvind Kejriwal was not very tough but it was not an easy task either. The first major task for Arvind Kejriwal was to build a strong personal brand and he managed to build a very strong, trusted and approachable political brand. Building a political brand is not an easy task, a politician needs to build a positive image and sustain the image. Arvind kejriwal has been successful in building the brand and here is how the brand Arvind Kejriwal was built. In my views, the key elements which helped build brand Arvind kejriwal include:

Storyline with new twist: Arvind Kejriwal, instead of focusing on one religious group, or caste based politics, or income based classification of vote bank created a new segment of ‘Aam Aadmi’ and promoted it with his anti-corruption stand. This new segment of Aam Aadmi crated a new mathematical equation based on a new emotional connect.

A Brand-New Voter Segment: The targeting of ‘Aam Aadmi’ with clean image enabled him to garner support from every corner of the town. This new vote bank was not about fifteen, twenty, or thirty percent of vote share but possibly every common man could associate himself with this new equation. This change was not about reengineering old equation, it was brand new mathematical equation in the political world.

Party with a Difference: Arvind Kejriwal, has always maintained that he and AAP are different from all other political parties. He maintained one single voice that Arvind Kejriwal and AAP stands for issues of citizenship, governance and accountability and they don’t believe in consumer politics of Congress or majoritarian politics of BJP.

Party has Origin in a Mass Movement: The success of Arvind Kejriwal can also be attributed to the success of India Against Corruption Movement. Arvind Kejriwal from day one has been advertising his party as a movement despite having registered it as a political party.

Symbol Connecting Common Man: The act of connecting with common man can also be seen in the selection of election symbol – Jhaadu (broom). The Jhaadu has been successfully utilized in delivering his anti-corruption message, which was the core of AAP promise.

Anna Topi a Symbol of Trust: A traditional symbol like the Gandhi Topi or Anna Topi which stands for an old world value like social change worked very well in favour of AAP. The power of Anna Topi was successfully adopted by AAP by changing the print on the cap to “Main Aam Admi Hoon” from earlier “Main Bhi Anna”.

Party of Common Man: Arvind Kejriwal also managed to create an image that he is one amongst the voters. He is the common man. Arvind Kejriwal with his middle-class dressing sense with thick muffler, old blue sweater, chappal, et all has managed to create a unique brand image in modern-day politics. The human face of Arvind Kejriwal can also be seen in many of his small and big actions.

Saying Sorry is Humane:  Kejriwal managed to promote a face of common man by accepting his mistake of joining hands with congress, and yet another mistake of resigning as Delhi Chief minister in 49 days.

Kejriwal has kept his promise noble and ethical. AAP’s story is perhaps the simplest of all other contemporary political stories.  Arvind Kejriwal has drafted the AAP Story and his personal branding carefully.

 

Politics