The covid-19 pandemic that, unfortunately, placed us in the dark shadow of disease, death and destruction of the economy, caused several other collateral damages, namely to the candidates for the Presidency of the Republic and their teams, who had to choose marketing strategies election totally conditioned by the situation.
This campaign is based on the communication tools that are available, focusing on the media, especially television. Ideological positions aside, this is the election that lives from the voter’s empathy with the candidate – which often increases, even, some party ‘disloyalty’ – so the ‘street’ factor, which allows direct contact with voters, is what they are missing most.
Electoral campaigns are communication ‘wars’ so an analysis of candidates carried out through their participation in the television debates held by SIC, RTP and TVI – which in this context were of singular importance – allows us to observe whether strategies, positioning and the messages may or may not have been effective.
Let’s talk about the candidates who lead the polls. Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, ‘the incumbent’, is the best prepared for this election since he leaves with more than 65 percent advantage, continues to ‘thrill’ the Portuguese with his affections and, rationally, is very sure of his positioning (social right) and the messages you want to convey. This factor, combined with his political and television experience, has allowed him to present himself at the best level, managing, in a chameleonic way, to adapt his posture to the profile of each candidate and to his political needs. On the negative, he was not sufficiently prepared to respond to the ‘cases’ that shook his Presidency and which, inevitably, would be raised by his opponents.
André Ventura won in television audiences – his combativeness does not leave his curiosity indifferent – but he was disappointed in the face of the expectations created about his television performance. If the style gave him the victory in audiences, the ideological inaccuracy (after all, what is André Ventura’s right?), The continuous repetition of the same fracturing messages and some inelegance must not have pleased a slice of his electorate and the electorate potential. While in the legislatures André Ventura won the ‘protest vote’, in the Presidential ones the candidate has, in this chapter, the competition of
Ana Gomes, for what was expected more. Ana Gomes is a good alternative for the socialist electorate, which is unable to place its vote on Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa’s ‘social right’ and, in this field, she complied as she presented herself as a defender of ‘her’ PS and in a very institutional posture. However, for those who also want to conquer the territory of the ‘protest vote’, they did little risk. I was left with the feeling that any media training had robbed him of the combative spirit that pleases some left and even the extreme left. It lacked genuineness.
Let us wait, then, for the results of the 24th
Analysis of Maria Domingas Carvalhosa, CEO of Wisdom Consulting, to the Presidential 2021 communication, published in the most recent edition of M&P
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