Innovative campaigns time and again rewrite the rules of winning. Politicians are extra careful about the political advertisement used for campaigning. They know that advertisement strategy is an important and deciding factor in winning an election.
What Is Political Advertising? A Historical Overview
Political advertising is a form of political campaign. It’s used to seek support and influence voters. At every level of the campaign, politicians leverage existing structure. They do so to map out new strategies to use for the current election. Election windows do not afford politicians the luxury of time to gamble. You want to be certain that the method you are using works.
During the elections of 1952, the world saw the first use of TV commercials. These were used by presidential candidate Dwight D. Eisenhower. It was a huge success that brought in a series of elections that explored TV commercials. In 1960, Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy used TV commercials for debates in the election.
The momentum grew. In 1992, cable television networks had a heavy influence on political advertising. President George H. W. Bush and Governor Bill Clinton relied on television networks to reach a new demographic of voters.
An average American could have sworn at that moment that this is it. The height of political campaigns. But then, the internet happened. Political campaigns took a drastic change. Web-based campaigns replaced traditional campaigns and TV commercials.
Data analysts played vital roles in the 2004 political campaigns. These experts coined the process termed narrowcasting; an advertisement that is target-specific. At this point, political advertisement had become the center focus for advertising agencies. It is this system that Senator Barack Obama rode on to become the 44th president of the USA in 2008. He communicated with his supporters and constituents, and he leveraged a go-fund-me campaign. The success of his campaign can be partly attributed to how well he used the internet.
Advantages Of Political Advertising
Political advertising is a unique advertising niche. It requires a level of expertise. It treads a different path than other advertising niches. On top of rallies and door-to-door campaigns, politicians continue to use political advertising. They do this to solidify their base and attract a new demography of voters.
Here are some of the key benefits of political advertising for an effective campaign:
- Detailed Awareness: Politicians are social liberators. The society sees you as a change agent. This is why you need a platform to share your thoughts with the people. You would agree that in today’s society, people have less time and initiative to research. Political advertising helps to sensitize the populace on critical issues affecting society. They explain how your party plans to resolve these issues. The goal of every campaign is to educate voters about your initiatives and programs. It’s also to secure their votes.
- Speed of Information: The technology available today makes it easy to spread information. Speed is an advantage that comes with political advertisement. You can debunk a lie put out by your opponent against you fast. You can inform your supporters about a rally coming up in their neighborhood. This means they can organize and be ready faster as well. Political advertising makes it super easy to reach out to your base.
- Wider Audience: Political advertising allows you to reach a wider audience. You can do this with limited resources. Direct campaigns always have the limitation of reach. You can only access a hand full of people, and need to travel to many places to cover ground. But, political advertising allows you to reach several places at the same time. You can have your jingle shown on TV at different times of the day across different states. You can post an ad on Facebook and target voters across states.
- Closes the distance: Political rallies and one-on-one campaigns often projects candidates as aliens. There is that impression of distance that people feel at rallies. If you are attending a rally for the first time, the candidate may appear distant. Political advertisement closes this distance by bringing the candidate closer to the people. Your face tends to grow on voters when they see you more. It is this familiarity that gives you an edge at polls.
Are TV ads, radio jingles, and Social media ads still effective for political campaigns in this era?
Political advertisement aims to improve the chance of a candidate winning. Politicians often consider advertisements that are precise, laser-targeted, and concise. As a political candidate vying for office, every advantage matters. Sometimes, the advantage that you seek is in your method of campaigning.
You are leveraging the uniqueness of the political advertising platform. As a politician, you will be curious about what works better. Take TV commercials for instance, it is past its days of glory. There was a time when TV commercials were a deciding factor. Candidates with better TV representation had automatic advantage.
Governor Ronald Reagan’s exposure as an actor gave him an edge during the 1980 election. He had better composure than the incumbent president, President Carter. This became a problem. Politicians began to familiarize themselves with the TV. Some bought media houses and influenced the ones they could not buy. They did this by buying up all the available slots for adverts. So, politicians had to fight for dominance on the TV space as well as the polls.
The outbreak of the internet reduced the impact of TV commercials and radio jingles. In fact, the internet has made TV commercials and radio jingles seem like an archaic approach. There is a small amount of people that still pay attention to TVs. The average internet user is a youth. So, the focus of political campaigns shifted to the internet. It afforded the opportunity to target a larger community of emerging voters.
Nonetheless, the same problem that plagued TV commercials crept into the internet. Candidates with access to more funds bullied their way into the system. They shut the door against others. This is one reason why the cost of political advertising on social media and other PPC platforms is rising.
Even if you can afford the cost of running ads on social media outlets, you have a much greater challenge.
The 21st century is full of impatient people. A large number of prospective voters are distracted on social media networks. Social media is full of a lot of activities, all wanting to catch the fancy of internet users. Know that your campaign adverts will be competing with other ads. This makes it difficult to engage internet users.
There is an increasing need to explore new advertising platforms. These platforms should be scalable. They should also be able to convey your campaign policies to the right audience.
Backseat Advertisement: Using Backseat Advertising As An Effective Campaign Strategy
TV commercials, radio jingles, and social media ads still work. But, there is an emerging industry that is cheaper and can deliver better results. Backseat Advertising is the new kid on the block. Politicians can leverage it to reach and engage voters.
What is backseat advertising?
Backseat advertising uses the backseat of rideshare vehicles to show ads. Backseat advertising is an innovative technology. It uses a tablet placed in the backseat of rideshare vehicles. These are used to show creative and well targeted ads to riders.
Smart business owners are already using this new advertising system. They use it to attract new customers and grow their revenue. This can work well for political campaigns, too. Candidates can use backseat advertising to reach a demographic of voters. They can connect with them on a personal level by having their videos shown to them during their ride.
Features of Backseat advertising
Here are some of the features of backseat advertising. These can make it a great option for political advertising:
- Flexibility: Ever been in a situation where you notice a mistake on one of your billboards? Calling your team is not the issue, but how soon can they fix it? Not forgetting the fact that it will cost a lot of money. Backseat advertising is flexible. Adverts can be edited, modified, or changed fast, using less resources. Backseat advertising allows this flexibility. This is because it operates a flexible digital platform controlled from several sources.
- Measurable: What is one of the major challenges of traditional advertising? It is the inability to measure the reach and engagement rates. So, it can be pretty difficult to measure the performance and effectiveness of your ads.
Backseat advertising allows you to track your campaigns and measure the engagement rates. You have access to actual figures to analyze how your campaign is doing. You get to see your best performing ads. This allows you to know what is working and what isn’t. This information helps you decide what tweaks to make for better results.
- Wide Reach: 25% of Americans use Uber at least once per month. That is 25% of Americans that backseat advertising allows you to access. There is also Lyft and other ride sharing platforms.
Benefits of using Backseat Advertising for Political Campaigns
Political advertising is very competitive and every advantage counts. Society continues to disintegrate into smaller constituency of like-minded people. So, the need for a laser-targeted and flexible advertising platform arises. Backseat advertising checks all the boxes in the list of a political candidate. It is new, fast, and has a focused wider reach.
What you are leveraging as a candidate is the technology of rideshare agencies. You are taking advantage of the opportunity to be in the face of your target audience every time they take a ride. About 10 billion trips were completed at the end of 2018, and 99% of Americans are familiar with Uber and Lyft. Can you relate with those figures? If so, then you understand how fertile this virgin land is for political aspirations. Backseat advertising is the future. Be among the first to explore this platform.
Aside from all that has been said, there is more.
- Higher Engagement Rates: Backseat Advertising helps you engage voters on a personal level. No other advertising platform offers you this opportunity. There is a continuous viewing of your content. Viewers cannot skip the ad or fast-forward it. You have the full attention of the rider throughout the entirety of the trip. With backseat advertising, you only have to focus on creating compelling ad content. It should be something that people can relate with.
- Customization of adverts: Backseat advertising is flexible. It allows users to customize how ad messages should be displayed. It also allows users to decide what format they should appear. You can play with different creative options until you find a winner.
- Direct contact: A door-to-door campaign is arguably the most effective form of campaigning. It doesn’t matter how advanced and sophisticated technology becomes. The door-to-door campaign is ever relevant. But, one that comes close to this form of campaign is backseat advertising. Backseat advertising is like one-on-one campaigns. It positions you in front of the people that matter most, voters!
- Unlimited reach to a captive audience: A rider in a rideshare vehicle is captive for the rest of the journey. Riders are bound to watch and react to backseat adverts. They should be watching your political campaign adverts on their next rides.
- Geotargeting: Backseat advertising allows you to create ads that target riders based on their location. This is particularly beneficial to candidates contesting in local and state elections. You can create a customized ad and show it to people in a particular location. The ad will speak more to them and bring you closer to the people at the grassroots.
- Cost-Effective: Billboards, TV commercials, and radio jingles are pretty steep in price. They’ve also waned in influence over the years. Backseat advertising is inexpensive and delivers measurable results. It allows you to run an effective political campaign on a lean budget.
There is a thin line between winning and losing an election. Do you want a cutting advantage over your opponents? Then you need to find creative and unique ways to reach voters. You have to stand out of the pack. One of the easiest and most effective ways to do that is connecting to voters on a personal level. Backseat advertising offers you exactly that. Backseat advertising puts you in the faces and minds of voters. When you engage with people on a regular basis, you increase your chances of securing their votes and turning them into loyal fans.
Table of Contents
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Chapter 3 – Advantages Of Political Advertising
Chapter 5 – Conclusion