Candidate Social Media Tips

Setting up and using social media channels is essential to running a modern political campaign. People (voters) expect to see content created by candidates when they search for them on their favourite social media platform. If you’re not there, you’re missing a big opportunity to introduce yourself.

The internet can be an extremely useful tool for promotion with most of the options being low cost or no cost. While it does require some savvy to navigate, the barrier to entry is extremely low with potentially large payoffs.

The big dollar advertising campaigns that would typically use radio, tv, or print can be supplemented or even replaced by ads that are just as professional but created using the tools that are available to everyone for free.

Social media and the internet allow you to deliver your message to your audience instantly with a minimum amount of production, at an extremely low cost.

Leveraging social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and to a lesser degree the social media flavour of the month, can be more effective if used to its full potential.

Building a Strong Structure

It’s important to plan both the structure and implementation methods of your strategy.

The easiest recommended structure involves building a website that will serve as your foundation from which all other efforts stem. All promotion and communications should refer back to the website. By sending people to the website, they’re taken away from other distractions and delivered to a place where you control the message.

Focusing Your Audience

Creating messages that are transient and have no call to action or desired destination for the audience is like presenting your message while walking through a crowd of strangers. All the targeting and reports in the world won’t do any good if you message is a dead end.

Give people a reason to take the next step. Ask a question or provide people with a link to your website.

Know Where You Are

Different social media platforms attract different types of people. Nothing is black and white but certain messages will get better traction on different platforms.

Use Your Platforms

Regardless of the platform, it’s important to fill out your profile as complete as possible. Always upload profile images and include biographies.

Foundation Site

This website should be very focussed and convey your message at a glance. This is where a visitor will get your pure message without any 3rd party ads or other distracting information. Your Foundation Site is where you direct all traffic and only link away from if absolutely needed.

When you are publishing articles of substantial length (300 words or more) you should always publish them to your foundation site.

As well as having a dedicated page with all of the necessary contact information, you should also include some basic contact information in the footer or sidebar of the site.


If you don’t tell anyone about your events, no one will show up. Your event listing should have all of the information required for someone who doesn’t know anything about the event. People need all the information required to decide whether or not they want to go, and then find and attend the event when they do.

Publishing on the internet means there are no space restrictions on how much information you can display. Use this to give people what they need to support you.

A recap with photographs makes a quick and easy post to share on social media.


The best way to get someone to donate to your campaign is to ask them. Be clear, concise and present a few methods. Some people might not be tech savvy and will never send money over the internet, while others don’t even know what a cheque looks like.



Twitter is a free microblogging social network that has about 330 million active users.

  • Each post can be a maximum of 320 characters
  • To view messages posted by other people, you will need to “follow” them. Once you follow someone, their messages will be displayed on your home stream timeline
  • When you post a message to Twitter the people following you will see your message on their home stream timeline.
  • If someone that you follow posts something that you want to interact with, you have 3 options:
    • Reply
      Just as you would assume, this sends a message to the author
    • Retweet
      This will repost the Tweet and allow you to add your comment
    • Like
      Click or tap the heart to notify the author of the post that you appreciate or agree with their post


If used properly, Facebook can be one of your most important tools.

  • According to Facebook they have 19 million Canadian users with 1.5 billion worldwide.
  • Age 25 to 34, at 29.7% of users, is the most common age demographic.

Facebook Page, Group, or Personal Profile

Candidates should always set up a Facebook page and never use personal profiles or groups

Personal profiles are for non-commercial use and represent individual people. You can follow profiles to see public updates from people you’re interested in but aren’t friends with. 

A Facebook groups might look like a Facebook page, but their intent and features are different.

Groups are for exactly that. A group discussion with everyone sharing, posting, and communicating together.

A Facebook pages offer unique tools for businesses, brands and organizations. Pages are managed by people who have personal profiles. You can like a Page to see updates in News Feed. You must have a regular account to create a page, but it is treated as a separate thing.

Create a vanity URL as soon as possible. Sometimes Facebook will require you to get 25 Likes for a page in order to change the URL, so get your page set up early.

Facebook Insights

Using tools like Facebook Insights will allow you to view your reach, views, and engagements for your page. Utilizing the Insights tab on your Facebook page you can see what’s working and what’s not

From the Insights tab you can choose to pay to “Boost” your posts so they will be displayed to more people


Can be useful for brand building and awareness


YouTube is its own social network and can be useful if used correctly. Yet spending a lot of time working on the popularity of your YouTube channel is time that could be spent doing something more useful.

Even though you won’t be using YouTube as a “social network”, it makes an excellent repository for your video for embedding on other platforms. The YouTube platform is by far the best way to deliver video reliably and free.

Rather than uploading a video to Facebook, I will usually upload the video to YouTube and share it to Facebook because of video quality and the ease of use of YouTube.


In order to use TikTok effectively, you will need to invest some time. You will need to post often and make your posts easy to engage with.