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Tories plan beefed up social media operation to take on Labour

John Ashmore

2 min read

The Conservatives are planning a big expansion of their social media team to help the party "broaden its appeal", according to a leaked document.

A memo given to the Sunday Times shows party bosses are planning to quadruple the number of staff working on social media and set up new local groups under a project called Conservative Renewal.

According to the document the new groups would offer “practical help and assistance to community projects”, while also feeding into the party's data-gathering.

“Conservative Renewal would not only build goodwill, forge new partnerships and encourage people to think again about the party, it would provide the media team with a steady stream of engaging content and third-party endorsement from ordinary punters.”

The same paper also revealed that Andrew Bridgen, the Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire, has written to party chairman Patrick McLoughlin calling for sweeping changes. 

Backbenchers have complained that as well as a manifesto light on sellable policies, the Conservatives did not match Labour on social media. 

Momentum, the grassroots campaign group set up to support Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, notched up millions of views for its viral content across various platforms such as Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram.

Mr Bridgen said part of the solution could be to recruit the chief executive of the Vote Leave campaign, Matthew Elliott.

Mr Elliott is a campaigning expert, having previously set up and spearheaded the Taxpayers' Alliance, one of the UK's most influential pressure groups.

“We need to look at the Vote Leave campaign and should look to recruit the personnel who ran this very effective campaign,” Mr Bridgen wrote. 

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