Key Lessons Learned

Integrate into the fabric of the campaign

Because digital and social media are a tool for communicating, mobilising and organising, they must form a core part of a campaign strategy. Ensure that digital staff are involved in campaign planning and decision-making. For example, how a message is communicated on social media will differ from traditional media, and will require specific expertise.

Don’t just create content – harvest it

A digital strategy is incomplete without a supporting content strategy that consists of engaging, relevant, informative and shareable content that promotes key campaign messages and activities. But more than this, campaigns must create a space that encourages and helps supporters to create their own content. Authentic campaign messages from supporters to their networks can reach more people and incentivise more action. Supporting content created by individuals, stakeholders and other campaigning groups can also be harvested and leveraged on your channels, where appropriate and with permission.

Encourage supporter participation

A digital campaign should make it as easy as possible for people to show their support online. If you provide a spectrum of participation, with different levels of engagement or points of entry, then supporters – whether active or passive – can identify ways they could get involved. Some people may want to show support by simply changing their social media avatars; others may want to donate online or even make a video. However supporters want to participate, it is important to ensure they can easily do so.

Respond to campaign developments in real time

In a media landscape increasingly influenced by social media, the ability to respond in real time to campaign developments will allow you to get your message out quickly and take control of the situation. Acknowledging and responding early will allow you to own the narrative and claim the online space, while providing a message for advocates and supporters to get behind.

Put a plan in place

Effective planning will help you execute a digital strategy. To help meet campaign objectives, Create and populate content calendars. Spend two hours at the start of the week developing and planning content for the week. Proactive content can be scheduled for peak times, freeing up time during the week for listening, engaging, and monitoring performance on social media.

Beyond the echo chamber

Social media is often criticised as an echo chamber or filter bubble that reinforces one’s beliefs. A digital strategy using informative and compelling content that inspires people to take action will ensure that your campaign moves from “clicktivism” to meaningful engagement. You should aim to achieve a balance between motivating and mobilising your support base to act as agents for change, and attracting new audiences and bringing them into the campaign.