Social Done Right: A political campaign to raise public awareness using Social Media feauring Jaag Utho

This blog is part of our Social Done Right series where we bring to you some outstanding social media campaigns and our insights into its success!

 

Last month, I was glued onto Twitter as I saw the official Twitter account of President Barack Obama send out endless tweets with the twitter handles of Republican Senators. The flurry of activity was created to gather support from the citizens of America to arrive at a ‘bipartisan resolution to the US debt ceiling debate’.

The following day the story was covered in all major news papers & websites. As I scanned through each of the news article, I understood a couple of facts -

a. Organizations and Government institutions are using the social media network to create awareness and generate a force in order to bring change rather than just create noise

b. Government social media campaigns have moved beyond just the ‘Like’ button on Facebook

America, in particular President Obama’s media-strategy team has been the forefront runner to use social media in order to build support for his campaigns. Obama’s presidential win is a testimonial to the fact that social media is a powerful tool. In recent times the upsurge in Libya, Egypt and Tunisia scream that change is possible through the use of social media.

This time I wanted to explore a new country and a new campaign. I wanted to understand if there was any other country which was using Social Media to mobilize the mass apart from the above mentioned countries. To quench my thirst for unique social media campaigns I stumbled upon a very recently launched campaign called ‘Jaag-Utho’ or ‘Wake up’.

‘Jaag-Utho’ which means ‘Wake up’ is a political campaign launched by Imran Khan’s party called Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). Imran Khan a former Pakistani cricketing icon and now Chairman of PTI announced the campaign on 28th of July 2011. “Jaag-Utho” campaign aims to mobilize the youth of Pakistan through the means of social media to bring a change and transformation in Pakistan’s civil and political society. It urges the Pakistani youth to contribute to stand against corruption. The campaign also aims to help re-build Pakistan into a society based on the principles of integrity, sovereignty and prosperity.

Allow me to share some of the major highlights of the campaign with you.

1. An online rally curates more voice in comparison to an offline rally
The ‘Jaag-Utho’ campaign happens to be the first social media campaign by any political party in Pakistan. For young Pakistanis, the virtual rally ‘Jaag-Utho’ is a platform to speak their mind without fear of oppression. As I continued to keep a track on the development of the campaign on Facebook, I was amazed to see the page explode with conversation.

For me reading those viewpoints of common Pakistanis seem to capture the real emotions, not what I always find in newspapers. The pent up frustration with respect to unemployment, government corruption and growing panic about foreign interference were very much evident. Imran Khan and his team seem to have their finger on the pulse of the young generation in Pakistan and the necessity for a common platform for their voices to be heard.

I was pleasantly surprised to find young Pakistani women participate in the discussion forums as well. I had read about the rigid religious customs encircling the life of a Muslim woman in Pakistan. Thus, I was absolutely thrilled to find women actively participating in the page. Such instances truly amplify the power of Social media. The ‘Jaag-Utho’ campaign provides these women with -

a)  A subject to discuss, form opinions and debate on them
b)  A common active platform where people are listening and acknowledging their views

This lets the common Muslim women from a conservative society, who do not have the opportunity to express themselves freely in public, are able to do so.

Jaagutho campaign, Political Social Media Campaign, Virtual Rally, Digiwhirl, Case Studies, Trend, Imran Khan, Pakistan

 

2. Ask for viewpoints and opinions rather than imposing them on the mass
Two important components of a successful social media campaign are -

a)  Allow your audience to speak
b)  Actively listening to your audience

The ‘Jaag-Utho’ campaign has been able to attract a huge mass in a short period of time due to the above stated reason. In a span of twenty days, I have seen the Facebook page grow upto 59,000+ members. While the Youtube page has been slowly moving up the ladder. Till date the ‘Jaag-Utho’ channel on Youtube has 170+ subscribers with total upload views at 15,000+. However, its not just about the growing number of membership its about the roaring conversations in these platforms that caught my attention.

The group, regularly updates its status which would seek for opinions from its members but would never impose them. The wall posts also continue to encourage and reinforce faith among the youth. You definitely won’t be disappointed if you saw the flow of conversation. Each ‘status update’ receives 50+ comments and 200+ ‘likes’. The dialogues in these pages are not just mere noise but the rising voice of a young Pakistan wanting to change itself.

Empowered by social media, the ‘Jaag-Utho’ campaign is determined to make these voices heard. It was also evident that tech savvy youth in Pakistan are regular users of social networks and the campaign rightly provides a podium for the voices spread across the web to come together and form a force.

Jaagutho campaign, Political Social Media Campaign, Virtual Rally, Digiwhirl, Case Studies, Trend, Imran Khan, Pakistan

 

3. It is important to keep the social networks active with regular updates and usable information

The ‘Jaag-Utho’ campaign has been on their toes with regular status updates, sharing photographs from rallies and conventions of PTI and relevant videos on other political events in Pakistan.

What I really liked about the campaign is the fact that they have been constantly trying to educate and increase awareness about the current political scenario in Pakistan. The ‘Jaag-Utho’ team invites the members to view live sessions of rallies online. Every time I visit the group, I find the page buzzing with conversation and information.

It becomes very important for a common social platform to have useful and valuable information. The usability and value will ensure an enriching experience for the party workers as well as online users. The constant effort by the team to connect and communicate to the young adults are constantly attracting large active audiences to the page.

Following are the few key takeaways from the campaign which can be replicated by other social/political organizations:

a)  Provide a common social platform to give momentum to the central theme
b)  Be receptive to end-user feedback and opinions
c)  Engage the members with usable information and an active discussion forum

The Jaag-Utho campaign showcases that prior to mobilizing a group for a cause it is important that we create awareness about that cause. This campaign sets an example which shows us that by sharing relevant information we can move towards the desired goal.

As for me, I will be happy to see positive changes in society using social media.

 

Jaagutho campaign, Political Social Media Campaign, Virtual Rally, Digiwhirl, Case Studies, Trend, Imran Khan, Pakistan, Rita Chowdhury, Rita Majumdar

About Rita Chowdhury

Rita is a public relations and corporate communications professional who has rich and extensive work experience. She has handled several PR campaigns and product launches for national and international businesses. She is a regular blogger and passionate about the dynamics of Social Media. She is currently helping DigiWhirl as research analyst!

Her BlogTwitterLinkedin

 

  • Waqar

    Good read…with a stunning picture in the end…!

  • Waqar

    Good read…with a stunning picture in the end…!

    • http://www.priyankawriting.com Priyanka Dalal

      Thanks Waqar! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/Hassan.Sunny Syed Hassan Talal

    Social Media in Pakistan has play’d its important part in the mass awareness of issues, opportunities, problems, solutions, positivism etc. Pakistani youth is us’n social media as a tool not only to communicate but to express ‘emselves ! I would love to quote your blog in ma blog for the social media usage !!! Thnx for the review :)
    have a successful nd happy life !

    • Rita Chowdhury

      Hi Syed,

      We are glad that you liked the post. Social Media is a powerful tool and should be used deligently to bring about positive change in our society.
      You can certainly quote our blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mfarhan1 Mohammad Farhan Riaz

    Hi! This is Farhan and am from Pakistan! Awesome post and good analysis! Plus I would like to add that women here are more free than the global perception about them. Anyways, keep up the good work!

    • Rita

      Hi Farhan,
      We are glad that you liked the post and found it useful. I am absolutely sure that the world will soon know that women in Pakistan live in liberal society than we perceive it to be. Such post as this will only help to spread the around.
      Thank you so much for the encouraging words.

  • Pakwolf

    I think the perception that’s out their in the western world and even in India is that Pakistani women are ultra conservative. Not True don’t believe what FOX TV and the like networks tell you about the young women of Pakistan. Cable TV, Internet and Cell Phones have changed how women interact in Pakistani society today. They are vibrant and independent minded and can stand their ground for personal rights. It’s not a perfect society for them and never will be but it has come a long way. It’s sad that it takes a social media event to highlight this fact. Even our neighbour India is quite ignorant about the contemporary Pakistani society thanks to the black out of Pakistan cable TV from Inadian airwaves. As long as Indians will compare Pakistanis with Indian muslims they will always percieve us to be educationally backward and rigid in Islamic thought and pratice. I saw more Burqa wearing Muslim woman and skull cap wearing muslims in India then I have ever seen in Pakistan perhaps its the minority syndrome where they Indian Muslims have to wear their idenetity on their sleves. It’s not the case in Pakistan until west and India in particular stop watching their media and interact with Pakistanis and watch Pakistani media their negative bais about a conservative Pakistan will stand firm. Today’s Pakistan is only islamic in name when you visit the country and see the moral decline year after year the label “Islamic Rebulic” becomes a farce.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002446948946 Mohammad Saad Ullah Malik

    I have learned from many people that if Imran Khan would come into the power, surely he could make sum changes. But each of them are reluctant to give vote to him, with an evidence that he have not good support of any famous political leader and active members.

    If we believe best in our views, then we shouldn’t have to rely on anybody’s participation. This is all we could do through what we think.

    ”LIKE IF YOU LIKE WHAT I THINK”

  • http://twitter.com/Rai_Azlan Rai M. Azlan Shahid

    Hi this is Rai Azlan the founder and blogger of MyLandPakistan.com
    Pakistan is one of the growing countries in terms of social media with its diversified social media usage, some use it for networking, some for the business and advertising, however what i have observed that using of social media to bring a social change and education has a major share in this pie chart. that is the reason social media and Pakistan are two major factors in my thesis for my MSC.
    in fact i am thankful to social media that somehow provided me with the platform to do something for My country and my blog was the first step and than the network i made here gave me many chances to do something in practical as well than just writing for Pakistan.
    60% of Pakistani population is youth and they need direction to use there energies for a bold and beautiful Pakistan, and i believe social media is trying to play that role by increasing thee exposure and educating the.
    as far as Women side of Pakistan goes, it is far different than what international media has made us to think and believe, we have women in all fields of life serving, and playing there part with following all the religious obligations.
    in the end i would like to say that it was nice reading this post thanks for the interest showing in Pakistan, and i have added this blog to my reading list so expecting some more great stuff.
    stay blessed.

    • Rita Chowdhury

      Hi Rai Azlan,

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the usage of social media. We are glad that you that you liked the post.

  • Sarahrajput

    Its very important to develop th social & educational awareness among youth
    of our country,,revolutions,or change in society only happens whn we understand th problms,th sufferings & th miseries. Jaagutho hz done a job
    well-done. Hope its a great net work whch brings more awareness in our society.

    • Rita Chowdhury

      Hi Sarahrajput,

      Thank you for sharing your insight with us. Social Media is indeed a critical medium to increase awareness among the mass.