How AI is Revolutionizing Political Advertising in the 2024 Election
October 25, 2023
In our last blog post I delved into the positive impact AI can have on political advertising, as most of the content available (some of that shared by Political Marketing + Media across social platforms) is decidedly negative. This blog is more toward the “how” AI is impacting the 2024 election cycle and thus giving context to the positive/negative attributes.
As you know, the world of politics is in a constant state of evolution, and technology is playing an increasingly significant role in shaping the political landscape. As we approach the 2024 election, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is emerging as a game-changer in political advertising. AI is transforming the way political campaigns operate and interact with voters. Simple as that. This blog will break down the “how” and provide real-world examples.
AI-driven algorithms are making it possible for political campaigns to target their advertising with unparalleled precision. Campaigns are now able to analyze vast amounts of data, including social media activity, online behavior, and demographic information, to identify potential supporters and swing voters. This allows them to create highly personalized ads that speak directly to the concerns and interests of individual voters.
Example: The 2020 Presidential Election
In the 2020 presidential election, the Trump and Biden campaigns heavily utilized AI-driven targeting strategies. They used data to identify swing voters in key battleground states, allowing them to tailor their messages and ads specifically to those individuals. This granular targeting approach proved to be highly effective in mobilizing supporters and persuading undecided voters.
Automated Content Generation
AI-powered tools are making it easier for political campaigns to produce a large volume of content quickly. Chatbots, for instance, can generate responses to frequently asked questions and engage with voters on social media. This streamlines communication and allows campaigns to maintain a consistent presence online.
Example: Joe Biden's Use of Chatbots
During the 2020 election, the Biden campaign employed a chatbot on Facebook Messenger to answer voter inquiries and provide information about the campaign's policies. This not only helped spread their message but also freed up human campaign workers to focus on other critical tasks.
AI can analyze social media and news data to gauge public sentiment in real-time. This information helps campaigns understand how their messaging is being received and adjust accordingly. Sentiment analysis can also identify potential crises before they escalate, allowing campaigns to respond proactively.
Example: Twitter Sentiment Analysis in 2016
In the 2016 presidential election, researchers used sentiment analysis to examine the public's reaction to campaign events. This helped campaigns understand which messages were resonating and which ones needed reevaluation, ultimately influencing their advertising strategies.
Deepfake technology can manipulate video and audio to create convincing but entirely fabricated content. This poses a significant risk in political advertising, as it can be used to spread misinformation and manipulate public opinion. AI is playing a crucial role in detecting and combatting deepfakes.
Example: Deepfake Detection in the 2020 Election
During the 2020 election, several organizations and tech companies developed AI-based tools to detect deepfake content. They helped ensure that voters could trust the authenticity of campaign videos, interviews, and other media.
AI-driven predictive analytics help campaigns forecast future events and trends, enabling them to plan and allocate resources more effectively. This technology can predict how voters might respond to different messaging and which regions are most likely to swing one way or another.
Example: Predictive Analytics in the 2018 Midterm Elections
In the 2018 U.S. midterm elections, several campaigns used predictive analytics to identify key issues for their constituencies. For example, campaigns could predict that healthcare would be a top concern in specific districts and adjust their messaging accordingly.
Real-Time Ad Optimization
AI algorithms can optimize digital ad campaigns in real-time, adjusting variables such as ad copy, imagery, and targeting to maximize engagement and conversions. This dynamic approach ensures that campaign dollars are spent efficiently.
Example: Dynamic Ad Optimization in Local Campaigns
In local political campaigns across the United States, AI-powered platforms like Facebook's ad manager use real-time optimization to help candidates reach their desired audiences. This ensures that ads are seen by the right people at the right time, increasing their effectiveness.
AI is aiding fact-checking efforts to combat misinformation and fake news. Automated fact-checking tools can quickly analyze and verify statements made by political candidates, reducing the spread of false information.
Example: Automated Fact-Checking in the 2020 Election
Several media outlets and fact-checking organizations employed AI to verify claims made by presidential candidates during debates and speeches in the 2020 election. This helped inform the public and maintain the integrity of political discourse.
Simply put, AI is changing the face of political advertising as we approach the 2024 election. From advanced targeting strategies to automated content generation and fact-checking, AI is reshaping how political campaigns operate and engage with voters. While AI offers significant advantages, it also presents challenges, such as the potential for deepfake manipulation and the need for responsible data use.
As we navigate this new landscape, it's essential to stay informed about how AI is shaping our political discourse and elections. Voters should remain vigilant in verifying information and critically assessing the messaging they encounter. Ultimately, AI's role in politics is both a blessing and a challenge, and how we harness its power will shape the future of democracy.
Want to learn more about advertising opportunities for your campaign? Send me an email at SJU@politicalmarketingandmedia.com
Tags. Political Advertising, Elections, Campaign 2024, AI, Marketing