How Political Ads Can Influence Voter Opinion

Running a political campaign can be a draining experience, both financially and creatively. Candidates must constantly be on the lookout for means and mediums they can utilize in grabbing their audience's attention, and hopefully influencing their opinions in a favorable manner. As the days of online political advertising become increasingly more pronounced, many of the most influential moments before election day are happening on the web, in the form of videos, articles, and other social buzz.

In fact, Google believes that the most crucial moments for voters will happen in the moments of quiet research and consideration that are spent online - checking something out on YouTube or learning more on social media. These "micro-moments" prior to an election are created when a voter turns to their device as a way of understanding an issue, event, or candidate. After all, in a world where the average consumer demands instant gratification, it only makes sense that voters would catch up on political buzz with instant videos and web-based updates.

The Power Of Online Political Videos

Since the beginning of April, 2015, people have watched over 110 million hours of content on YouTube, related to candidates in the political campaign, and issues that those candidates may be addressing. To put the consumption of that information into context, the amount of YouTube videos watched equates to about one hundred times the amount of time it would take to watch the content aired on C-SPAN, CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC combined.

Social media and other forms of online advertising have long been making an impact in young and modern voters. For example, millennials generally prefer online formats for political advertising to other solutions for information, including outdoor marketing, letter marketing, and even television marketing. It makes sense that politicians would reach out to younger voters through online means. In fact, a study conducted by Harvard University's Institute of Politics found that eight in ten internet users between the age of 18 and 29 had a Facebook account. However, it seems that video advertisements don't just appeal to younger voters anymore.

In moments when voters are eager to learn more about the candidates reaching out to them, both young and old individuals turn to YouTube as a source of information. In fact, while 59% of the people currently using YouTube as a solution for political advertising information are under the age of 35, one in four voters using online video are actually over the age of 45.

Online Advertising Is Crucial To Politics

So if video advertisements online can truly influence voter opinion, how can candidates make the most of the trends in building their own image? The first step, as with any marketing opportunity, is to make sure that you're visible at the right time. When it comes to capturing the attention of an audience, and influencing their opinion, timing can be everything. After all, the modern voter doesn't just want the right content - they want the exact information that they need, precisely when they need it.

Candidates can improve their chances of having the right impression on voters by ensuring they're available and online when voters are in the crucial moments that might determine their future vote. For instance, candidates can check out trending topics and information to ensure that they're answering the most important questions that their voters are asking by creating relevant YouTube content.

As candidates examine what their voters want, they need to ask themselves whether they have the right content to answer the questions they're asking, and whether those videos are actually showing up for voters who are searching for answers.

Offering Value With Video Content

One of the most effective techniques that some candidates have begun to use in influencing voter opinion, is finding people who already have an impact in the sphere their audience frequents, and using their voice as a medium for political ideas. For example, if you're well aware that the audience you're trying to reach out to respects the opinions of specific YouTube celebrities, it only makes sense to approach those individuals and see whether you can make use of the sway they already have.

According to research, more than fifty percent of the people using YouTube on a daily basis, between the ages of eighteen and forty-nine, believe that their personal opinions - including their opinions on politics - are influenced by respected YouTube content creators. Today's savvy politicians are beginning to take advantage of YouTuber influence, by partaking in interviews with them, or partnering in videos for a share of the dialogue.