One election, Many Campaigns strategies; One party, many influence theory


By Gautam Sharma
For this upcoming IMC election, we have seen many campaigns undergoing everywhere for various candidates. Regardless of the candidates`™ potential, many of them are positioned-high by their supporters. But my men! See their profiles; some looks very old enough like the Alzheimer is near to attack. Some just stand-up because they gained little pseudo-kudos from their local elite, and some because their husband strikes some big shot, and brought her in the 5 Star Environment. Other because, without a doubt, just supported by Aam Aadmi. Ask yourself, why and how? Mamata`™s achievement is extraordinary. Is it just because she faced some extraordinary challenges or is it because of braving the sunny and rainy weather of Kolkata`™s streets or is it just because of that 1 lakh car project (Tata`™s Nano) which she able to built credible Public Relation than the Tata`™s PR officials or is it of her Guts that she possess to stand against the corporate head honchos of Biz-tycoon like Tata`™s. Ok! Let`™s leave it aside because West Bengal is not Manipur. But if the Japanese happen to see our people`™s Interest in IMC elections today, they would absolutely become surprise and would say, my gosh, this is HUNKO!`™ (Hunko equals unbelievable in English). Nevertheless, our people can`™t forget, our usual utterance `“ May the best person win. But when the best person won, only some will seal their fate and many others will deal in pain. So let`™s pray – `may this best person not won the election`™.

Some candidate`™s campaigns looks very alike as an Ads Campaign, because of the broadcasting nature in, of, Media. To me, it looks like they are planned, well-coordinated linked broadcast focusing in positioning a brand, an image of the candidate with an agenda from a maha-politician. And also seems like their messages are focus on directing towards a particular segment of population over definite and planned periods of time and space, with an aim to achieve specific objective such as rising pseudo-awareness or to increase share of the franchise market. But, we should not analyze because this isn`™t our absolute business. You know, campaign means `an organize course of actions to achieve a goal`™ and the term is widely used in military as a `series of operation in a definite area with or with one objective or forming the whole or distinct part of the war`™. And let don`™t debate about its origin, it doesn`™t matter where the term comes from, French `Campagn` meaning open country or Latin `Compainia`. Our job is to understand what seems all Greek to us, what seem us about the broadcaster that looks like owned by the party, or that seems like the party have buys the broadcaster.

Some others candidate`™s campaign, follow the old Propaganda theory. That was born during 17th century, when the Catholic Church set up its `College of propaganda`™ to propagate their views or faith. Later, in which Nazi mostly used as an instrument of politics, a power for social control, and mobilization of masses for war efforts before and during WW- II. In which, according to Goebbel, one was forced to distort the facts or even to falsify them to achieve one`™s purpose. This view has struck on and it has come on to mean any Publicity or information which is not necessarily related to reality. This may be the possible reason why, its pure novelty dies away and perhaps acquired a wide negative connotation due to excessive use or association with most manipulative or jingoism. What is more interesting to understand is many of their public speeches create more confusion about many issues and challenges that our people are encountering, making important one seems trifling, insignificant persons/things or issues seems weight, it create scene of divide amongst peoples which I want to termed it as `Election Divide`, which keeps people battling in a fog. Their Bandwagon techniques are really a WOW! They tells big lies that always made us credible, employed words and speech with double meaning, omit important facts and resort to the gross exaggeration to convince many that their views is No.1 and always above others. So, you should accept it. They also use an alibi-technique which is specially designed to scapegoat, to accuse someone for their many planned mistake, to blame for the evils suffered by the people. But now let`™s not blind with their science. If elections are to mean to divide rather than unite people, that what`™s the sense of electing someone?

And the latest trend adapting the environment now is `the theory of Influence`; it has its own various types but its usage and approach to INFLUENCE peoples varies from person to person, and community to community. I didn`™t construct this theory but it`™s widely practiced and became an undying fashion. The first model is somewhat look like the Brainchild of Paul E. Lazarsfeld, Benard Berelson & Hazel Gaudget. Which they came to discovered from a classic study during 1940s Presidential election in the US. Their book `the people`™s choice`™ reveals that the Interpersonal relationship gives more influence and has an enormous impact on voter than direct influence like Public speeches, media etc. So, after internalizing the concept, what we do here is that, the candidate discuss then impressed and influenced the opinion leaders of a community groups or social groups, it may be a leader of local Clubs, organization or local pressure groups. This opinion`™s leaders are none but those people who are little bit ahead from the groups, in term of knowledge, information, economy standard, and modernity etc., and ultimately became a respected member from the groups which the entire members relies him for ideas, information or knowledge, and many decisions of the groups are indirectly led by Him (opinion leader). This Opinion Leaders have many followers of his opinion and the opinion followers are easily influence by their leaders to extend their Franchise-support for the persons, the choice of the opinion leaders ultimately became the choice of the opinion followers. The make a group decision led by the opinion`™s leader then throw a party— Chak `“Cha-nabi, haikhradi loiray! Tea party bu tauradi Soidarey! (If said a luncheon, then it`™s ultimate! If done tea party, it`™s for sure!).

But there are also many who don`™t belong to luncheon or tea party; they are kind of freelance people who can`™t be influence by the opinion leaders but influence silently by the candidate agents through TA plus DA, their usual utterance is `please don`™t make it acknowledge to anyone`™. And the category that doesn`™t belong to the both is the die-hard activist who strongly provide for a winning-supports physically, emotionally, mentally and financially for the candidate. They mobilized starting from their family members to relatives and friends. They are the future agent/dealer for many IMC Schemes if the candidate expectation is met. And, I think, we don`™t need to mention about old phenomenon, that is Self- Supporting theory, Party supporting its owns party candidate. This one is very crucial because it stands like a Mock test for General Election and applied new `trick of the trade`™ to check the feasibility for upcoming big election.

But, there is also another influence theory which can be called as `Self- Influence theory`™. This theory is practiced only by few people who seem to get a little Buddha comparing with others, and who are highly aware of their own Right & Duties. They do self-influence stays free and away from any other influence and make enable them to make right decision and right choice. But this self-influence people`™s choice can`™t steer the direction of the peoples because they aren`™t the majority. So, you know who Steer`™s and what will happen`¦`¦`¦..


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