NEW DELHI :
Shah Rukh Khan starrer crime thriller Baazigar’s meme tweeted from the official Twitter handle of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) caught the attention of netizens and rival parties. The meme, which went viral, is a part of the ruling party’s Delhi electoral campaign ‘Acche beetey paanch saal, lage raho Kejriwal’ comprising ads, poll anthem, memes and videos.
Keeping humour and political satire as its central theme, the party is indulging in social media banter with opposition Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) through funny old ads and Bollywood film memes with catchy subtitles.
“We are shunning negativity and staying away from personal attacks which often happen in politics. Our social media strategy is mirror to that. We will only talk about our work and use humour and satire because that is the only way to reach young voters," said Jasmine Shah, part of AAP’s Delhi electoral campaign team.
Instead of taking pot shots at the likely BJP chief ministerial candidate Manoj Tiwari, the party has been leveraging humour using his popular Bhojpuri song videos and juxtaposing them with AAP’s electoral anthem composed by musician Vishal Dadlani. Apart from Twitter, the campaign team of the party is actively promoting shareable content on social media platforms such as ShareChat, TikTok, Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp.
“Every day there will be a new piece of promotion in form of a video, meme or image. We will use all pop-culture references which people can relate to which includes television shows, films, sports and images," Shah added.
While Congress has responded to one of AAP’s video with a funny old television ad from brand Dulux, BJP’s social media handle created a video ‘Paap Ki Adalat’ (spoof on popular news television show Aap ki Adalat) where a Kejriwal lookalike is being interviewed.
Advertising experts believe spoof war and game of upmanship is common in political advertising but it should not be distasteful as it can backfire.
Soumitra Karnik, chief creative officer at Dentsu Impact and Happy mcgarrybowen, believes that the AAP content is hilarious and maybe much needed in the times we are living in. “Everything and everyone is so tense. It also positions the two parties (AAP and Congress) as someone who can take a joke. However, the parties must be watchful that in this game of upmanship, it shouldn't get distasteful, which it very well could considering its politics we are talking about," he said.
From strategy perspective said Prashant Puri, co-founder and chief executive of digital marketing agency AdLift, humour will help these parties drive recall, engagement and increase social media following.
“The party which manages to churn out more innovative, creative and out of the box content will win the electoral battle on social media," he said.
In terms of media platforms, Twitter will remain the top go to platform for campaigns while for younger voter base (under 25 years) TikTok and Instagram will be important while Facebook will be leveraged to engage with voters above 25 years.
“I expect these parties to actively engage on these platforms," he added.