The Use of Facebook as a Marketing Tool by Politicians: An Empirical Study in Mauritius

By Michael Pompeia and Vanessa GB. Gowreesunkar.

Published by Journal of Communication and Media Studies

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published Online: August 23, 2016 $US5.00

This study explores Facebook usage by politicians' for relationship building with voters. Based on a qualitative design approach, the Facebook profiles of 722 politicians were observed during a specific period of time during the month of August 2015 and a total of 253 Posts were analyzed. The general findings indicate that Facebook is an effective marketing tool for most politicians involved in relationship building. However, independent candidates from minority parties use Facebook less and are still using other communication tools to market themselves to the masses. The findings also show that Facebook has become an important communication channel between the voters and politicians thus enhancing proximity. Furthermore, it was found that for an effective use of Facebook, politicians need to manage certain aspects of their profile. The study has several limitations and the main one relates to its generalizability to other contexts. Nevertheless, it gives an interesting insight on the contribution of Facebook in the marketing and communication strategies of politicians in Mauritius. Future research may look into a larger sample and engage in a comparative analysis between politicians of different parties.

Keywords: Facebook, Politicians, Relationship Building

The Journal of Communication and Media Studies, Volume 1, Issue 3, September, 2016, pp.25-38. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published Online: August 23, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 792.604KB)).

Michael Pompeia

Student-Researcher, Marketing, Open University of Mauritius, Port Louis, Mauritius

Dr. Vanessa GB. Gowreesunkar

Lecturer, School of Arts and Humanities, Mauritius Institute of Education, Reduit, Mauritius