Monthly Archives: January 2009

Budget Cuts

Compare the above commercial with the ‘Warning! Tory Public Spending Cuts’ political advertising that the Labour Party ran in the last general election and you’ll realise just how far the UK has got to go before our political advertising starts to regularly, genuinely change peoples’ minds about issues.

It was released last week by The Hospital Association of New York in response to budgetary cuts by their State Governor (thanks to The Spot for this one).  The first person perspective and hysterical parents hammer home the brief: that you never know how much you value your local hospital until it’s not there.

John ‘n bass

I picked up on this very amusing little mash-up of John Prescott’s recent through the line media coverage on Recess Monkey.  It’s an unashamed rip-off of the clip below but is very funny nonetheless.  It’s good to see that Go Fourth are embracing the light side of political communication, they’ll be much more successful for it.

EPLP Politcal Broadcast

This is a video I’ve grabbed off the aforementioned EPLP website.  The brief was obviously to introduce Labour’s MEPs and give people an idea as to what they do with their time.

It’s done in a very ‘corporate video’ manner.  There’s no real story or Big Idea driving the broadcast.  And, they’ve used the old (dull) trusty formula of “stock-footage, interspersed with Important Politician talking about their values”.

The thing to remember, however, is that this is not the leading piece of political communication for the European elections later this year.  It is a video to give more information to those who are already interested enough to  have made their way to the EPLP site.  In that respect, this video is fine.

To get people out to vote Labour in the EU elections in June, the Labour Party will need something substantially more interesting.

Raised Eyebrows

I am DESPERATE for someone to make a mash-up piece of political advertising involving: Alistair Darling’s eyebrows, the state of the economy and the new Cadbury’s commercial (below).

If only I had the animating skills! If anyone out there does – there’s a bar of chocolate in it for you!

Veterans Against the War

I picked up on this very slick new video by Iraq Veterans Against the War on The Spot today.  The high spec animation combined with the matter of fact voice over gives this commercial a very rational feel to it.

The makers, Veterans Against the War, have cleverly realised that because of the media saturation of highly emotional ‘war-time suffering’ footage, there is a need for a different approach in order to get their message to cut through.

Picking the right tone for the right time is absolutely fundamental to political advertising.  This spot has judged that the mood in the US is one for pragmatic action, not tugging at heart strings.  The message the advert drives home is: “with the election of Obama the battle of ideas around the war is over, these…. are the reasons why we’re right. Now let’s get on with getting the troops home.”

Virtual Battle Bus

It sounds like  some within the Labour Party are finally starting to get it!  This upbeat from video Go Fourth is saying all the right things to try to re-engage their membership.  Recognising that command control is outdated (and generally not much fun unless you’re doing the commanding) and promising a change of campaigning style is exactly what the members will want to hear.

This advert should serve as a wake-up to those in charge of the party as to the sort of communications they should be putting out every week.  Compare this with ‘webcabinet’ and which would you prefer to watch?

Prescott’s video is upbeat, positive, inexpensive and engaging.  I’m not saying this is a perfect piece of political communication, it’s just infinitely better than the dross that has been dribbling out of Labour Party HQ.

Best Political Adverts of the 2008 Presidential Election

US pollster Mark Penn conducted a survey of politico’s for some ‘readers awards’ for the 2008 US Presidential election.  The winners were decided on the basis of  475 votes cast by the subscribers of Politics Magazine.  Here are the tv political advertisements that won gold, silver and bronze in the catergory of Best TV Spot of 2008 in the US Presidential Election: 

 1st – Hilary Clinton, 3 a.m

2nd – Barack Obama, Moment

3rd – John McCain, Celebrity