iQ Media have released a report analysing the ad spend of the official Trump and Clinton campaigns over the last 30 days.
The data shows that, unsurprisingly, the candidates are focusing their spend on local TV stations (rather than national networks) in battleground states. It also shows that, as I wrote last week, Trump is outspending Clinton the final weeks of the campaign.
One thing that jumped out to me was the fact that Trump is airing a number of different TV commercials at a relatively similar weight, whilst Clinton is only really pushing one.
This indicates to me that Trump is varying his message depending on the political context of the state (you can get a flavour of his ads here), but Clinton’s campaign feel they’ve landed on a piece of creative that is moving the dial.
The spot, called ‘Mirrors’ (below), uses Trump’s own words to portray the Republican nominee as having a negative attitude towards women and asks voters “is this the President we want for our daughters?”
The power of the creative comes from the authenticity with which the cultural insight – that young women are often put under huge social pressure to look and behave in a certain way – is brought to life.
Despite the fact that it has over 5 million views (the most popular film on her YouTube channel), it will come as a surprise to some that her campaign isn’t varying the copy from state to state; in 2012 there was huge amounts of hype around the way the Obama campaign varied their ads depending on events and the demographics of the viewer.
But the Clinton campaign’s research must show that ‘Mirrors’ is working and therefore, in a typically cautious way, they’ve decided not to take a risk on other creative.
A copywriter named Louis Wittig from advertising agency Grey has started his own super-pac-with-a-difference. He describes the organisation as a collection of people “who find Donald Trump so absolutely annoying that we just have to do something about it.”
Their plan is to raise small amounts of money from like-minded Americans using crowd-funding platform GoFundMe and use the cash to run advertisements that campaign against Trump.
To get the ball rolling, they’re initially trying to raise $1530 to run a press ad in one of New Hampshire’s biggest newspapers two days before the New Hampshire Primary.
The ads he’s prepared (examples above) are brilliantly written and are art directed in a refreshing modern way. And. more importantly, the whole idea of a ‘people’s super pac’ is just awesome.
One of Sen. Ted Cruz’s Super Pac’s (supportive but independent campaign groups) has released a new ad aggressively attacking Trump’s record on abortion.
The footage is taken from Trump’s appearance on TV news programme ‘meet the press’ in 1999.
Subsequent to that interview, in 2011, Trump renounced those views, but that hasn’t stopped Ted Cruz’s supporters going after him.
There’s a big evangelical voter base in Iowa that seem to be moving away from Cruz (and Carson) and towards Trump. This is clearly Cruz’s attempt to stem the flow.
Trump has also come under fire for not being a ‘proper’ conservative, given his previous record of donating to Democratic candidates – including Hillary Clinton – and mixed form on immigration.
This ad, as well as appealing to evangelicals, is trying to remind those voters who have a nagging suspicion about Trump’s true intentions, that he could be the sort of candidate who says one thing in the primaries before tacking to the centre ground in the run-off for the White House.
Creatively, it’s simple but very effective. It has all the stalwarts of quality political communication: intellectual clarity, provocative imagery and good ol’ fashioned repetition.
Chris Christie was last night re-elected as New Jersey governor with a 60-39 per cent win over Democrat Barbara Buono. The result is significant as New Jersey is a Democrat state (it voted for Obama over Romney by a margin of 18 points) but the Republican candidate won the day comfortably.
Early data shows that Christie drew substantial support from moderate and independent voters, something which the Republican Party have struggled to do on the national stage.
The accepted wisdom amongst most commentators seems to be that whilst Christie is a social conservative and economic liberal (i.e. a typical Republican) he didn’t let cultural issues didn’t come into play; there were no dog whistle politics and race didn’t come into it even tacitly.
The ad I’ve included above shows former NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal endorsing Christie; not many Republicans can claim black, West Coast, sporting celebrities amongst their advocate base.
Christie’s record is also notable for the fact that he worked with Democrats such as president Obama on bipartisan issues; this is unlike the stubbornness and bloodymindedness that has been said to characterise much of the current Republican Party leadership.
Chris Christie is now seen as a front-running candidate for the Republican nomination for the White House race in 2016. Christie didn’t shy away from that fact during his acceptance speech stating:
“I know that if we can do this in Trenton, New Jersey, maybe the folks in Washington should tune into their TV sets, and see how’s done”
Watch the above advert ‘Obamaville’ by Rick Santorum’s campaign all the way through… Did you see it??
If not, watch this:
Santorum’s campaign have been caught using subliminal techniques in their advertising to try to build a cognitive connection between US President Barak Obama with the President and dictator of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
This really is an all new low for political advertising, the Santorum candidacy and the Republican Party. It’s so morally bankrupt that it’s almost comical.