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Categories: political ads

MediaVest Projects a Barack Obama Win Will Be Official at 11pm Tuesday Night

Posted by: Burth Helm on November 03

While everybody wants to know who will win the presidential election Tuesday night, advertisers want to know when the winner will be declared, i.e. the moment when millions of consumers...

NRA's Last Gasp Against Obama

Posted by: David Kiley on November 01

The National Rifle Association has an idea to get it's anti-Obama message out at the last minute. The NRA wants to buy space on the plastic bags that newspapers use...

Obama Video: It Could Be Morning in America.

Posted by: David Kiley on October 30

Barack Obama’s 30-minute infomercial was a bit of Kennedy blended with a smattering of Ronald Reagan. Despite even the candidate calling it an “infomercial” on Comedy Central, it was a...

Who's behind the "Wassup 2008" Obama ad? Not Budweiser.

Posted by: Burth Helm on October 27

This morning when I blogged about the “Wassup 2008” Obama video, two questions sprung to my mind. First, who paid for this thing? The production values are very high –...

The Budweiser "Wassup" Guys' Obama Ad is Dark and Wickedly Funny

Posted by: Burth Helm on October 27

The election’s best campaign ad arrived less than two weeks before November 4. We find the guys from Budweiser's original "Wassup" ad, which ran during the 2000 Superbowl, in a...

Joe The Plumber---No Mas

Posted by: David Kiley on October 16

Joe The Plumber, star of the third and last the debate between John McCain and Barack Obama, is now the star of a new ad from the McCain camp. This...

McCain Finally Goes Positive

Posted by: David Kiley on October 16

Finally, a positive message from John McCain. This ad, launched today very nearly rises the level of a real reason to vote for the GOP candidate. It’s the first ad...

McCain Ads: All Through the Ayers Haze

Posted by: David Kiley on October 10

John McCain sees ready to make an attempt to save his flagging campaign by running ads about the economy, his ability to lead the country out of the current crisis,...

Obama Outspending McCain 3-to1 in Ads, and The Spread Could Widen.

Posted by: David Kiley on October 08

The Wisconsin Ad Project shows in this table where barrack Obama sees his best chances to win a red state, and where John McCain sees states worth defending. It...

Dueling Campaign Wall Street Ads: The Lesson is "Keep It Simple, Stupid."

Posted by: David Kiley on September 17

Looking at today’s economic ads from both Barack Obama and John McCain is a study is the difference between message and content. Obama’s new ad, which runs two minutes, is...

McCain Camp: If It Sounds Like It Could Be True, Then It Must Be

Posted by: David Kiley on September 13

You should know there is a problem when calls your campaign out for a misleading ad called “factcheck” that purports to use the non-partisan organization’s ad vetting apparatus...

Obama Camp Uses The "L" Word To Describe Palin Claim

Posted by: David Kiley on September 08

Up to now, the McCain and Obama campaigns have been just feisty complained about one another's ads, using words like "distortion," "Misleading," etc. But when it comes to the McCain/Palin...

McCain Ad or Video Press Release?

Posted by: David Kiley on August 27

The McCain campaign hasn’t let up an inch firing off new ads this week. It seems to me there was a time when each party’s convention was almost a mutually...

Obama Not Immune To Overstatements in Ads

Posted by: David Kiley on August 06

While presumptive GOP nominee John McCain has been pilloried for a flurry of negative ads and attacks against Democratic challenger Barack Obama, Obama is hardly immune from overstatements in ads....

McCain Takes Negative To Olympic Levels

Posted by: David Kiley on August 05

The McCain Presidential campaign has made a $5 million ad buy on the Olympics, $1 million more than the Obama campaign. According to AdAge, the McCain purchase includes network and...

McCain Campaign Denies Preparing Ad That Would Have Bashed Obama Had He Visited Wounded Troops

Posted by: David Kiley on July 31

Referring to blog entry: "The New Normal: McCain's Desperate Ad Hours," the McCain campaign issues the following statement: “Like the press corps, this campaign was entirely unaware of Obama's scheduled...

McCain Waging Effective War of Words.

Posted by: David Kiley on July 30

The war of hot button words is revving up in the Presidential campaign. In John McCain’s newest ad today, the McCain camp calls Barack Obama, “the biggest celebrity in the...

The New Normal: McCain's Desperate Ad Hours

Posted by: David Kiley on July 28

Please see my blog entry ["No Conversations": McCain Troops Ad] to go with this original post: The McCain campaign had adopted an ad strategy that has been dubbed “desperate” by...

McCain's Summer of "Love" Ad: Pass the Ammunition. But hold the Hope.

Posted by: David Kiley on July 08

Imagine my surprise when I looked in my e-mail and saw that the McCain campaign issued an ad titled “Love.” What will this be, I thought. The softer side...

The DNC and RNC Websites Both All About Obama

Posted by: David Kiley on July 07

Visiting the websites of the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee is an interesting study in party personality right now. Go to, and the homepage is kind...

Even GOPers are Hoping To Ride Obama's Coattails

Posted by: David Kiley on June 25

You know it’s going to be a rough year for Republicans at the polls when a GOP Senator running for re-election tries to invoke an endorsement from Barack Obama in...

First Obama Ad Battles Elitist Tag

Posted by: David Kiley on June 19

Barack Obama released his first general election ad today. Slick and well written, the ad is as if the campaign staff ran down a checklist of the issues people report...'s Opening Ad Against McCain Rough. But Not as Rough As It Will Get.

Posted by: David Kiley on June 18

Much is being debated about whether the new anti-McCain ad produced by has gone too far. Pundits as diverse as Bill O’Reilly and NBC’s Chuck Todd have said it...

Daisy Girl Revealed.

Posted by: David Kiley on June 18

Gotta Love the Net. I always thought that the little girl in the infamous 1964 "Daisy" ad run by the Johnson campaign against Barry Goldwater was the same girl who...

"Daisy Ad" Tony Schwartz Dies. But Who's That Girl?

Posted by: David Kiley on June 17

Tony Schwartz, who helped create the infamous “daisy ad” that ran only once during the 1964 presidential race but changed political advertising forever, has died. He was 84. Schwartz died...

McCain Golf Gear Shares Equal Billing With "Strategy?"

Posted by: David Kiley on June 09

Go to and one item sticks out like a goiter. In a menu of key categories, there is "Strategy," "Decision Center," "General Election," and "Golf Gear." Golf Gear? McCain...

McCain Doubling Down On Military Service

Posted by: David Kiley on June 06

John McCain has begun to respond to Democratic attacks that he a candidate more about war than peace. This new ad, titled: “Safe,” includes biography about the McCain family’s long...

McCain's Town Hall Meeting Invite is Cagey

Posted by: David Kiley on June 06

Even Fox news commentators said the GOP nominee's speech Tuesday night was dreadful. In a fairly pipsqueak voice, the AZ Senator repeated, in his attaacks on Barack Obama, "That's Not...

McCain's Ad Spending Now Will Come Back To Haunt Him in October

Posted by: David Kiley on June 02

The WSJ today notes that GOP presidential hopeful John McCain has been running ads in Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania that sell the Arizona Senator as a true conservative who has...

RNC Slimes a DNC Anti-McCain Ad

Posted by: David Kiley on May 01

There are few things funnier these days than the Republican National Committee complaining about the Democratic National Committee over ads, and vice versa. This is bloodsport, and the two political...

The Youtube Election Gaining Steam

Posted by: David Kiley on April 24

This year’s election is going to be more a youtube season than any other in history. As one new ad from a Republican 527 Group ad shows, the object is...

Even McCain Doesn't Want A Pastor Ad War

Posted by: David Kiley on April 23

How far will Republicans go with using images of Barack Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright? The North Carolina Republicans have jumped in the pool to try and make Obama...

Breaking Down Clinton's and Obama's New Ads: Remember when this was supposed to be "An Embarrassment of Riches"?

Posted by: David Kiley on April 15

Back in January, which seems like a year ago in this election campaign season, many were saying that the tension between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama was an embarrassment of...

John McCain is Now Hearing Bells: AUGH!

Posted by: David Kiley on April 03

And here we go with John McCain’s 3AM treatment. Now, this really does seem to be going an ad too far. At what point does the 3AM thing just get...

Clinton Ad: Will Somebody Answer The Damned Phone!!

Posted by: David Kiley on April 02

Senator Hillary Clinton’s speechwriter’s and ad team need to take up writer and TV personality Dick Cavett’s suggestion of hiring a first-rate comedy writer. The Senator has released yet another...

New McCain Ad Recycles POW Video

Posted by: David Kiley on March 28

GOP Presidential candidate John McCain has kicked off a new campaign ad meant to assert his credentials over the Democrats while Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama tangle over whether Obama...

527s Gearing Up Ad Machine

Posted by: David Kiley on March 10

Seemingly taking their cue from the Clinton campaign's negative attacks on Sen. Barack Obama as a kind of ice-breaker, Democratic 527s groups are starting to gear up an onslaught of...

Clinton Goes Decidedly Negative A Day Before The New Super Tuesday

Posted by: David Kiley on March 03

Up to now, Hillary Clinton has skated along the negative line in her advertising. That's over. Even the 3AM ad the campaign launched Friday was arguably not negative against her...

Viral Videos This Political Season Getting Better All The Time

Posted by: David Kiley on February 15

With all the millions, and soon to be hundreds of millions, to be spent on political advertising the rest of this year, what is emerging is a trend that sharper...

Media Spend, Messaging and Drama Favors Dems in Convention Battle

Posted by: David Kiley on February 11

As the Democrats look ahead to a race between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama that could go to the convention, so-called Democractic strategists who believe the Dems will be at...

Obama Video Best Ad Yet. Pity It Didn't Run in the Super Bowl

Posted by: David Kiley on February 05

How many political ads have we seen in the last 12 months? That’s when Mitt Romney’s first ads started showing up on my TV screen. The experts say that over...

Two-buck Huck

Posted by: David Kiley on January 03

Great Post by The New York Times' Timothy Egan: The rap against Mike Huckabee, the Baptist preacher and ex-Arkansas governor now doing for the Republican Party establishment what three-alarm...

Edwards and Huckabee's Latest Ads Show Value of Direct Speaking

Posted by: David Kiley on December 19

I'm sure many are already sick of the election cycle, even though it hasn't really begun yet. But if you are a political junkie, it doesn't get much better than...

Humor in Political Ads Doesn't Really Work

Posted by: David Kiley on November 20

Governor Mike Huckabee's new ad featuring "actor" Chuck Norris feels to me like something a dog would film if they were actually afraid they might catch up with the bus....

Giuliani Untested, Especially in Ads

Posted by: David Kiley on November 19

The power of in the 2008 election can be seen in ads for Rudy Giuliani. I saw his new Iowa TV ad on TV, and planned to blog about...

When Candidates Give Up, The Ads Can Be Fun

Posted by: David Kiley on November 14

It's like watching some pathetic guy at a bar at closing time. He has been trying to pick up a girl all night. No luck. And, so, he just starts...

Fixing "Brand America"

Posted by: Burth Helm on September 27

Advertising Week in New York is winding down, and I just got back from one of the final panels, called "Brand America." Two teams of ad school students and ad...

Romney:Can Buy Me Love...Maybe

Posted by: David Kiley on July 02

Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney placed more local TV advertisements than all other candidates combined, with 4,549 ads, mostly on local broadcast television, through June 10 according to The...

The 2008 Election is funny, "ha ha." That's starting to feel funny "weird."

Posted by: Burth Helm on June 19

I've got to disagree with you on the Hillary vid, Mr. Kiley. I love the idea of an almost shot-for-shot parody of the last scene of The Sopranos, but for...

Hillary Bats .500 with video and song

Posted by: David Kiley on June 19

Hillary Clinton is making moves to humanize her image. The campaign posted a video on her campaign website today to introduce her campaign song. The video is very good. A...

Presidential Candidates Victims of Cyber Squatters

Posted by: David Kiley on May 15

If you want a little perspective on who among the presidential candidates will be most prepared...who is the most far-sighted....the most might consider those who had the foresight to...

Richardson Ads Clever. But Not Presidential

Posted by: David Kiley on May 11

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson’s presidential campaign has launched a couple of new ads that it’s put on and his website. These ads are very out of the...

Romney's First Ads Do Not Inspire

Posted by: David Kiley on April 27

Mitt Romney’s first campaign ads are a start to a long long long campaign season. It’s hard to call these ads a good start, or a bad start. It’s...

The YouTube Election Ratifies Google’s Investment

Posted by: David Kiley on November 08

As I was watching Election returns last night, I was struck by NBC’s Tim Russert’s comment that this may be the first election that turned on It caught...

GSD&M's ads Best of Campaign Season

Posted by: David Kiley on November 03

Sprinkled in among the truly dreadful and insulting political ads this month has been a campaign, paid for by the AARP and done by Austin TX agency GSD&M, that has...


News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

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