Part 1. It’s time to face facts: What is your Winning Strategy
I am sharing this message to both of you, now that all the parties have concluded their conventions and primaries and both of you have emerged as the presidential candidate for your respective parties. Congratulations!
Firstly, I am propelled to air my views and opinion about your ambition to become the president of Nigeria because regardless of any shortcomings both of you have; I still believe we can make a little advancement in Nigeria with your presidency.
But, Permit me to share my concerns. I am very disturbed because I fear you might not win this presidential election if there is no solid winning strategy which I am sorry to say I have not seen so far……… I am sure you know that, in order to develop a winning strategy, you must know who you are fighting, know their strengths and weaknesses and know your own strengths and weaknesses too.
Let me put it this way first, I wish to remind both of you first of all that this election isn’t just about you. That said, I advise both of you to drop your self-interest, egocentrism, selfishness, self-absorption and lean more towards a collective interest. This means, that you must forget everything your close friends and relatives are telling you about retaining your current position in your party without looking out for a formidable alliance to win your competitors. It won’t work!!!!!!!
#firstlesson, you must learn to let go of your personal interest and you must be willing to sacrifice a lot if you want the dream of a better Nigeria to be possible.
#secondlesson, you must always lookout for a winning plan that will take time to analyze what your rival might likely do in this election and how to outfox your rivals knowing fully well that they are more financially & Structurally equipped.
For sure, I believe you all know already that there is need for strategic planning on how to win and perhaps you may have employed Political strategists, consultants, campaign managers and pollsters to advise you on this forthcoming election. A lot needs to be done. For a quick start, I present 6 important points to think about going forward.
Form an alliance
You cannot win this election without forming an alliance with other parties that have like minds. Please remember that President Buhari ran for three consecutive presidential elections in 2003, 2007 and 2011 without a win, until APC was formed in February 2013. The party is the result of an alliance of Nigeria’s three biggest opposition parties – the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) that merged to take on the People’s Democratic Party which of course led to the party’s historic victory in the 2015 elections.
So, you cannot do this alone. Please Go back and form an alliance and combine your resources together to fight your opposition parties. You should do this as soon as possible. If you don’t form an alliance with all these new parties at least three months before this election, then we don’t have a case. You cannot win if we divide our votes to your different small parties.
Build a digital marketing
The 2015 election was a huge leap for digital marketing in Nigerian politics. All candidates needed to connect with voters through various channels. We saw a switch from tv and radio ads to web and social media campaigns as the major communication channels. Goodluck vs Buhari was the ultimate showdown that kept us on the edge of our seats. The handlers of Buhari’s campaign used tantalizing visuals, relatable content and had tons of influencers on their side. Goodluck’s team was mostly on the defensive and barely articulated his achievements in office. In the end, an epic digital marketing campaign unseated an incumbent president for the first time in Nigeria’s history.
In offering my 10cents in this political campaign strategy for winning an election in Nigeria in 2019, I will not bother you with all traditional ways (Television, Radio, Newspaper, Billboard, Posters, Banners, and Flyers, etc), and old methods of carrying out political campaigns, because I assume you know them are using them already. My political campaign strategy in Nigeria on this message will focus on a new media political campaign strategy and other strategies
For all I know, the new media political campaign strategy is untapped in Nigeria; those who tried at all in 2015 are either doing it wrong or in some cases halfway (therefore, giving room for opponents to strike – though for opponents who know what they are doing).
For example, when politicians hear social media, they think about it in terms of Facebook and twitter, this is not only a limitation in the part of the party, they are telling opponents how to beat them. In social media, there are different categories of social media such as news aggregators, photo sharing, video platforms, social networking, forum sites, file/presentation websites, etc. Each of this social media category has tens of thousands of sites existing in them. For example, in video category, there are Vimeo, Youtube, Dailymotion, Cokoyes, etc. You and your team should carry out situation analysis (fasten with strong SWOT analysis), and know platforms that fit into the political campaign strategies and apply them to win over rivals. If you do not know how to go about it, hire an online political campaign agency
The main political campaign tool for winning an election is communication: communicating the values, benefits, solutions to the masses’ challenges; telling voters how you want to solve their problems, what you stand for, why electorates should vote for you compare to the opponent(s), etc.
However, the masses have to be aware of the candidate to vote for, its pedigree, and what it can do for them if elected, and then any other thing will follow.
Why split your resources when you can actually pull your resources together for a huge fight ahead? I like how Omoyele is raising funds online lately, but will that be enough? No!!. Both of you should engage voters to support the campaign in whatever capacity. One dollar is something. This is how Obama was able to win. Remember Nigerian voters are more concerned with Stomach infrastructure- Stomach infrastructure is a new vocabulary in Nigeria’s political dictionary. It is simply about giving gift items to voters to get their votes. Although I don’t encourage this at all, you must get funds to organize rallies and run campaign to inform voters what you can do
Local reach & the Go Out to Vote campaign
Ensure that those who are supporting you have their PVC. There is no need to have 10 million followers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter who are fighting for you online but none of them has a PVC. Please have a massive “get your PVC campaign” to ensure that all your voters have their voters’ cards. Ensure that on the day of the election that all your voters will also go out and vote
‘Forming’ familiarity with the masses
This technique has also been adopted by popular politicians across all the major political parties in the country. It involves the politicians engaging in acts peculiar to the masses as part of their efforts to gain popularity among the people. Politicians have been spotted in the past drinking ‘pure water’ (sachet water common among the Nigerian masses), roasting corn, plaiting hair in the market, eating in local food joints, riding Okada bike etc. Even if you don’t want to toe the same line. I encourage you to engage in town hall meetings. Meet with your voters, talk to them, hear their stories and use their stories as your motivation and share such stories as what motivates you.