Shane Daley is the owner of OnlineCandidate.com, which provides political campaign websites for candidates running for local office. For one low price, they offer a quality website designed to effectively broadcast your campaign message 24/7.
Savvy local election candidates can use the web to their advantage and run virtual rings around an opponent who has less online experience. Here are three tactics that candidates sometimes to gain an online advantage over an opponent. Only one of these tricks is really ‘dirty’, though. Guess which one!
1. Stealing a domain name. This can be painful if your opponent registers your name as a domain name. You can try to get the name for yourself, but that can take time and become an unneccessary distraction. If an opponent registers a domain of your name, does nothing with it and does not send the traffic to another site, you might want to move on and register a different name.
2. Backlinking bad things about a political opponent. This really isn’t a ‘dirty trick’, and it’s a strategy that any campaign can implement. Basically, you take a bad or embarrassing article about an opponent and link to it from as many places as possible. (Facebook, Twitter, bookmark sites, etc.) This works better on smaller campaigns with less overall online exposure. Done properly, you may be able to ‘push’ up that item in the search results for people searching for that person. One tip – use the candidate’s name as the text of the link!
3. Micro sites. This is where a campaign sets up a small website that focuses on a single issue or a flaw of an opponent. These sites are typically negative by nature. By targeting a more specific audience, you can provide with a single point of reference. One advantage of this technique is that you can keep ‘negative’ material off of your main campaign site.
There are, of course, much nastier things being done online between political opponents. Of course we don’t advocate stealing domain names, but back-linking and building micro-sites are effective tactics – particularly if they are backed by facts and the truth.
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