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Candidates turn away from online ads in 2010 midterm election November 8, 2010

Posted by rmshepard in Uncategorized.
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It was once thought that political campaigns would be fought more online than anywhere else. However, as recent reports indicate, candidates in 2010 turned their backs to online advertising and instead flocked to television. As Advertising Age‘s Vinny Minchillo claimed, “TV is back and it’s bigger than ever.” Political ad-spending in 2010 is estimated to have reached over $4 billion and 2/3 of that money went to ads of TV. Minchillo suggested that since 75% of Americans now reportedly get their information about politics from TV, versus 10% who preferred the internet, TV is no longer as irrelevant as some suspected.

Surprisingly, television networks that were suffering in the economic recession have had a major influx of advertising dollars due to the election. Moreover, increasing prices for ads have driven up costs for television spots in general. For these networks, then, looser restrictions on campaign ad spending have been a great blessing.

For more on the record spending in 2010, see the first clip below. To see how a recent US Supreme Court ruling led to this spending spree, watch the second clip.

Discussion Questions:

1.  Why might political advertising on the internet be less effective than television advertising?

2.  What are the negative consequences of this surge in TV ads during the midterm election of 2010?

3.  Is the internet a dead tool in reaching out to potential voters? Why, or why not?

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