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Wednesday, 14/06/17

The UK General Election - Did You Notice Any Ads?

By Kayleigh Martin, Account Director


Election

Last week I read an article that stated 85% of consumers could not recall any political advertising from the recent election campaign.  In addition to this, 60% of respondents in this study also said that the main political parties did not, in their opinion, successfully communicate their messages to the electorate.

These findings got me thinking, had I seen any of the party campaigns? What did the creative look like?  The honest answer to these questions isn't good. None of the key party campaigns spring to mind unprompted.

So why are people like myself switching off?

Perhaps it's a result of the false promises made during last year's EU referendum as 60% of consumers said that they are less likely to believe political advertising following the Brexit vote. 

Maybe it's just a general feeling of people having a lack of connection with the key political leaders and their parties.

Or it could be due to confusion caused as a result of the large amount of fake news stories appearing within our social media feeds or within the content we consume online.  According to a BuzzFeed news analysis, in the three months before the US election the best performing fake news stories generated more engagement than top stories from major news outlets.  The 20 top performing fake news stories generated over 8.7million shares, reactions and comments whereas the top 20 genuine news stories generated just over 7million.

The phenomena of fake news is still very much a hot topic. Facebook announced last month a commitment to introduce new technology on their site to better identify accounts that spread spam or fake news and as a result, deleted thousands of UK accounts in response. Vodafone also revealed last week their plans to block its advertising from appearing on fake news websites or sites that feature hate speech, saying "they will no longer tolerate their brand being associated with this sort of abusive and damaging content".  

So getting back to the topic of this article, the key party ad campaigns.  This year the strategic approach across key parties was pretty different from the more traditional campaigns of the past which focused heavily on outdoor, leafleting and press.  Social media was the channel of choice to reach and influence voters, and of course slag each other off.  This approach may have led to the low awareness levels found in the study.

In case you're like me and missed some of the online buzz for this year's election, you can find a good summary here of the best ads along with some non-political brands jumping on the election bandwagon: http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/general-election-2017-best-ads-so-far/1435458

 

*Sources

https://www.buzzfeed.com/craigsilverman/viral-fake-election-news-outperformed-real-news-on-facebook?utm_term=.qjm15VzwN#.xfrPE93Qk

http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/research-reveals-lack-trust-political-advertising/1435788#WFaOCJA3u1fXdXBP.99

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2017/05/08/facebook-deletes-thousands-uk-accounts-crackdown-fake-news/

https://www.creativereview.co.uk/2017-uk-general-election-ads-memes-lols/  


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