Advertising and Politics Essay

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Politics and advertising have developed from the past presence of concepts such as political parties, mass media, and interest groups adding to public conversation. Individuals see advertisements on television, the side of buildings, clothing and in a numerous amount of other ways. Now, government advertising has taken presence over other means of mass media used by government. This type of advertising is seen by many as controversial due the use of manipulation, persuasion, and exaggeration. Political advertisements can be negative or positive but generally have benefits either way. Negative advertisements are viewed poorly but work because they are general attention grabbing. On the other hand, positive advertisements can also be attention grabbing but are generally repetitive of previous advertisements. Government advertising is mainly used to promote election campaigns but can also be seen promoting other subject matter such as opposing sides on incoming laws. Overall, the goal of government advertising is to inform individuals of the politics around them and help them to choose a view on something such as an election candidate. I would argue that advertisements contain both negative and positive aspects that are essential to persuading the public to a specific campaign.
The documentary Art and Copy, directed by Doug Pray, discusses the advertising agency and its significant impact in society and culture. This documentary discusses advertising as a whole but from a various amount of viewpoints. The way that individuals view advertisements is often negative but advertisement agencies are not completely at fault. The individuals who build a campaign are simply using techniques that both their client approve and that have worked in previous campaigns or studies. The way a campaign is built is based on the public’s reactions to other advertisements. In a political campaign, the way governmental advertisements are perceived depends on each individual’s previous beliefs, viewpoints, and standards. Due to this aspect adverting campaigns often involve subliminal messaging, rhetorical devices, or other forms of persuasion.
According to Ted Brader, PhD, a political psychology professor at the University of Michigan, only the minority of advertisement consultants pay attention to the psychology and political science literature that goes along with the campaigns they are building. Although this fact appears to be true and credible, some campaign consultants are beginning to increasingly work with researchers. In fact, many advertising agencies now have a department that focuses on research. This department is essential to political campaign advertisements because candidates will spend more for better quality and further researched campaigns. Research will help to improve a campaign through the knowledge of what ideals are being promoted from a specific election candidate and through what techniques have worked in past campaigns. Due to the level of...

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