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I’ve done a lot of political advertising. I never planned on doing political advertising, but I was sucked into the vortex shortly after moving to D.C. I can tell you one thing, if people hate advertising, then people absolutely loathe political advertising.
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Working in political advertising can be a brutal. You’re basically trying to get everyone to show up on the same day and remember your brand on what amounts to a test — no looking off of someone else’s paper, no shelf talker to remind them. And even if you increase your “market share” from say 20% to 40%, a jump that would make any general advertiser wet their pants, you lose. Anything less than 51% is failure. This isn’t about sales. It’s about sheer numbers.
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From a strategic standpoint, this is straight line territory. It’s hard enough to get a group of people going in one direction, let alone people who aren’t that interested in what you have to say. The last thing you want to do is get everyone from point A to point B then try and orchestrate a turn. So, when I saw what should be a great Canadian campaign about the importance of voting for candidates that support education, little grey cells exploded.
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First the good —
I love the overall look of the campaign. This doesn’t look political. It has an edge to it. The dramatic voice over against the ridiculous footage of the kids is great. I see one of these spots, and I want to see the rest. That’s saying a lot for any ad, but it’s really saying something for a political ad.
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Now the bad —
Why the U-turn from “Vote Against Kids” to “Refuse to Vote Against Kids?” It’s completely unnecessary. Keep the creative, and end the spots with something along the lines of “Give kids what they really deserve. You’re vote.” Then tell me why I should vote for education, and where I can go to get information. No U-turn required.
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