The 16th Lok Sabha Elections are going on in India; the hunt is for a new government with a new leader. During this election, political campaigning has touched new heights along with controversies. And so has been the use of technology and social media.
Political parties are no more alien to social media and this was evident in Shaili Chopra’s second book – The Big Connect. With BJP being the pioneer in social media and use of emerging technologies, Congress has geared up with time and the youngest party AAP has surprised everyone.
Along with political parties, political figures have used the medium for brand building, reaching to the targeted audience and sorting out controversies. Among political figures there is no dispute that the BJP’s PM candidate Narendra Modi has been the torch bearer when it comes to social media and technology in the country. The latest use of 3D technology for his rallies held across India is a stellar example on how he has used technology and social media to extend his online reach.
Modi, who has been a clear winner on social media when compared with other political figures, has found a new love – love for selfie. A selfie or a self-portrait photograph, typically taken with a hand-held digital camera or camera phone has been the rage amongst the youth on social media. Everyone loves themselves and hence the craze for selfies. The bug has now bit Modi too.
On Chetan Bhagat’s birthday, Modi shared a selfie on social media which became a rage within no time. The selfie that has both Modi and Bhagat has received more than 2K retweets and another 2K favourites.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 22, 2014
A day before, National Secretary of BJP, Poonam Mahajan took a selfie while Modi was on a rally in Mumbai. The selfie shared on social media did get a decent buzz too.
— Poonam Mahajan (@poonam_mahajan) April 21, 2014
However the selfie rage for Modi didn’t stop there.
Today after casting his vote, he posted his selfie showcasing his inked finger along with his party symbol lotus. My social media news feed has been jammed by inked fingers this entire month as people have not stopped showing off how they have fulfilled their utmost duty and Modi joined them too. The response has been amazing on Twitter – the tweet has been shared 2.3K times and on Facebook the post has been liked by 157K people, 6K shares and another 8K people have already commented. I guess this is the Ellen DeGeneres selfie moment for India.
Voted! Here is my selfie pic.twitter.com/7OnhFiJ0AC
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 30, 2014
#SelfieWithModi Trends on Twitter
To make the Modi selfie moment a bit more interesting, the BJP digital team has created a mosaic of Modi’s face and asked fans to share their selfies along with #SelfieWithModi. If you are a Modi fan then all you have to do is upload your photo on the mosaic site. The site has given choices of regular upload along with email id or even access your Facebook account to upload images.
Once done you can search your selfie, zoom in or out and even take a look at images uploaded by others. A counter for total selfies uploaded could have been a great addition.
#SelfieWithModi is already trending at the top India Twitter trends since morning and by the looks of it, isn’t going to die anytime soon.
While Modi’s love for technology is nothing new, extending the selfie taken by him into a campaign is a smart way to create maximum buzz. This also gives the Modi fan boys to share their selfies at a time when everyone has been crazily sharing their inked fingers on social media.
A smart selfie campaign from Modi and BJP!