Communications Studies assistant professor Vincent Raynauld and co-author Dany Renauld write for the Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP) about mass media and political advertising over time and the impact of digital platforms. Often referencing trends in Canada, the authors examine issue-based and image-based advertising, and pre-campaign and in-campaign efforts.
The way that political advertisers approach their craft has evolved with the growth of political marketing and digital communications. They place a premium on strategic thinking to match messages, audiences and media. Much of this is familiar to campaigns past, such as using television to reach mass audiences or using image-based ads to frame how we see their opponents. To date, scholars have taken little notice of social media advertising by Canadian political parties. While many scholars have taken interest in traditional forms of political advertising in Canada, more research is needed to explore all aspects of strategic advertising in a fragmented media landscape.