Member of the ACT Legislative Assembly, Mark Parton, revolutionised the way politicians use social media to connect with their supporters.
When the world went into lockdown due to COVID-19, Mark took it upon himself to find other ways to relay his messages and policies as the ACT election neared in 2020.
Being a “doorknocker from hell”, Mark ventured into other communication channels including Instagram and TikTok to connect with those who support him but also people who are unaware of who he is and what he stands for.
At one stage throughout the pandemic, he was averaging 250 thousand views per month on TikTok as he was gaining traction within his local electorate.
Through his experience of owning a social media and marketing business, Mark identified TikTok as a means to communicate to his followers, in which his fame grew exponentially gaining over 490 thousand total likes on the app to this day.
Mark was originally elected to the Assembly in 2016 as the Liberal Member for Brindabella, and having used his social media accounts to gain popularity, he has been stopped and asked for selfies in his local shopping centre.
Considering the lack of politicians embracing the use of social media, Mark capitalised on this opportunity to use the internet to engage with new and emerging supporters.
As a result of his success utilising the internet, many of his parliamentary colleagues have emerged onto these platforms and have gained access to a new audience of supporters.
In this interview, Marks talks about the presence he has on social media, the challenges he faces and how he connects with the people from his electorate.