Is Microtargeting In Political Campaigns A Bad Idea?

July, 24, 2012 / 0 comments

People are getting used to ads that target them personally. They’re all over, on Facebook, Google, and just about every sidebar you look at. Now, political campaigns are using the tactic to promote specific messages to designated audiences as well.

Campaigns use anything from voting records, to online purchase histories to help decide which aspect of their candidate’s platform a voter sees online. For example, you could get an ad about employment issues, or reproductive rights based on personal information purchased by campaign marketing teams.

However, a study recently published by The School For Communications at The University of Pennsylvania shared findings that 86 percent of respondents don’t appreciate the targeted ads. And why would they?

It’s hard to trust a candidate that is willing to purchase information about potential voters, and the targeting can be quite presumptuous. That’s the consensus among most Americans. In fact, 64 percent of voters said their likelihood of voting for a candidate who has microtargeted them in advertising would decrease.

The information uncovered by the study should be an eye opener for political advertisers. Politicians try hard to gain trust, but these modern tactics are proving to do the opposite.

Post by Daniel Miller