Politics 2.0

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This week’s lesson focused on the idea of Politics 2.0, ultimately highlighting the idea that social networking and e-participation technologies will revolutionize our ability to follow, support, and influence political campaigns. This form of strategy was especially present in Obama’s 2008 campaign—Obama instantly acknowledged the fact that most people weren’t interested in politics itself, but rather how legislative decisions affect themselves and their life/occupation.

If one thing is evident in Politics 2.0, it is that the United States and Spain have very different ways of addressing voters:

  • Microtargeting in the U.S.— This advertising strategy uses consumer data and demographics to identify the interests of specific individuals/small groups of similar people to successfully influence their thoughts through their preferred communication channel.

microtargeting

In both 2008 and 2012, Obama established a massive analytics group comprised of behavioral scientists, data technologists and mathematicians to interpret data such as voter history, demographics profiles, financial standing, and even what magazines people read in order to better understand and influence Obama’s target audience.

Not to mention, Obama’s use of microtargeting even allowed for an effective broadcast buying approach—although both Romney and Obama purchased spots on local broadcast stations, Obama added infomercials to networks such as TV Land, whose viewers were determined to be “less political,” and therefore more likely to be persuaded.

  • Election manifesto in Spain— In Spain, both those elected and working on a campaign are professionals from businesses specialized in politics. Thus, an election manifesto is a straightforward booklet that tells people exactly of its political party’s programs, opinions and policies.

In Spain, it is sometimes considered taboo to be patriotic, whereas in the United States it is common for ultimately every citizen to be patriotic and proud of your country, regardless of political party. Growing up, I have always associated nationalism with Fourth of July barbeques and wearing red, white and blue. In contrast, in Spain the idea of being patriotic is perceived in a much more political manner. For example, in Barcelona I have noticed that the only devotion citizens’ show is wearing national colors for an FC Barcelona match.

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