SOURCE: Nordic eMarketing

Nordic eMarketing

May 21, 2013 06:55 ET

Analysis: The Role of Social Media and Online in Political Worlds Miles Apart

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND--(Marketwired - May 21, 2013) - According to political analysts, President Barack Obama's utilization of social media and other online assets played an important role in his successful 2008 campaign.

With dramatic changes in technology being introduced since then though, it is no longer enough to just target Facebook users. Twitter should also play a key role in any political campaign. In addition, micro-blogging sites such as Tumblr offer new ways to reach voters.

Candidates are using social media to encourage supporters and influence undecided voters; however, this use of online assets is not only happening in the U.S.

With Iran's 11th presidential elections fast approaching, it is clear that the online world is being utilized by parties and supporters with ideas, analyses and information being published on a daily basis. It seems that the online presence of candidates is a new criteria for the upcoming elections in Iran.

According to InternetWorldStats.com, there are 42 million Internet-users in Iran, which is roughly 50% of the population. With this in mind, a huge amount of experts believe that online presence and activity in Iran will have a decisive impact on the elections.

However, it seems that some are utilizing the Internet more than others; for example, Iranian politician Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf, who is running in the elections, has had a more diverse online presence and middle-eastern experts believe that the wide range of Internet activities conducted by both Qalibaf and his supporters is one of the main strengths of his campaign.

Supporters have created their own websites such as www.mardeamal.com, www.havadar.ir, and www.havadarportal.ir to help spread the word about the campaign. Each of these sites differ in approach containing analytical data, news and direct contact, alongside hundreds of weblogs and diverse fan pages on Facebook and Google+. The question is, will Internet efforts have the same impact on Qalibaf's campaign as it did on President Obama's 2008 campaign?

About the Author

Kristján Mar Hauksson is the owner and COO of Nordic eMarketing. He specializes in multilingual Internet Marketing and reputation management. Kristjan is the co-author of the acclaimed book, Global Search Engine Marketing. He sits on several advisory boards such as SEMPO.org and Bing Advertising. The above analysis is part of research that ties into Kristjan's upcoming book, Global Social Media Marketing.

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