President Barack Obama isn't getting lots of accolades for his debate performance last night, but his digital campaign team might deserve them when it comes to combining digital media planning and direct response messaging. Today, Obama for America is running the Promoted Trend on Twitter using the #ForwardNotBack hashtag leading to a video that came together in mere hours.
Obama is also running anti-Romney expandable ads on key swing state news sites with a message aimed squarely at younger voters, along with a more-general anti-Romney ad takeover mirroring the #ForwardNotBack theme on HuffingtonPost.com.
Yesterday, Mitt Romney's campaign used the same Twitter ad buy to put forth an economic message, and today the GOP campaign is reaffirming values the candidate purported during the debate with a site takeover on DrudgeReport.com.
The Obama paid trend links to search results topped with a video tweet from the Obama camp: therein lies about a minute-and-a-half of mainstream media response to the debate, all suggesting statements by Republican Mitt Romney were light on facts. TV coverage clips are coupled with several screenshots of equally damning conclusions on Twitter about Romney statements from non-partisan fact-checking groups FactCheck.org and Politifact.
"The results are in. Romney played fast and loose with the facts," states text that introduces the Obama video.
What Romney failed to deliver on last night: the facts. OFA.BO/zbSvXk— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) October 4, 2012
Before the debate, Obama's campaign surrogates played down his chances of scoring high points last night, in part because Romney had more recent debate experience and more time to prepare. Today's video-enhanced Twitter move seems to follow that strategy. Rather than highlighting the President and his own words, the video uses trusted media outlets to reinforce one of Obama's primary messages last night: Romney's claims regarding issues such as healthcare and his tax plan are not based in fact.
On the flip side, the Romney camp is using the former Massachusetts Governor's own words - many expressing sentiments he discussed during the debate in Denver last night - in a big ad takeover on DrudgeReport.com today. The national ad buy features several display units on the main Drudge page, many punctuated with the slogan, "A clear choice." The ads link to a generic donation page intended to capture positive reactions to Romney's debate performance in the form of cash.
Much of yesterday's first 2012 presidential debate was intended to draw contrast between Obama and the GOP hopeful.
According to reports new NBC News/Marist/Wall Street polling shows the presidential race is tightening in Virginia and Florida, two important swing states. The Obama campaign - through its Victory Fund joint fundraising committee it operates in conjunction with the Democratic National Committee - is on the attack in several swing states with a message targeting students and college-minded voters. Large expandable ads claim the Romney-Ryan plan would put "student aid at risk for millions" and "eliminate tax credit for tuition."
The ads have been spotted by ClickZ Politics on Florida's Miami Herald and Virginia's Richmond Times-Dispatch, along with newspaper sites in other swing states such as Iowa's Des Moines Register and Ohio's Cleveland.com.
Rather than linking to a student-debt related landing page, the Obama ads link to a page that compares the President with Romney on other issues like taxes, jobs, the War in Iraq, and healthcare. The bottom of the page features a donation form.
Obama for America - the official 2012 campaign organization - is also running a large home page takeover on Huffington Post today, suggesting that "Romney proved He's wrong for the middle class."
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Kate Kaye was Managing Editor at ClickZ News until October 2012. As a daily reporter and editor for the original news source, she covered beats including digital political campaigns and government regulation of the online ad industry. Kate is the author of Campaign '08: A Turning Point for Digital Media, the only book focused on the paid digital media efforts of the 2008 presidential campaigns. Kate created ClickZ's Politics & Advocacy section, and is the primary contributor to the one-of-a-kind section. She began reporting on the interactive ad industry in 1999 and has spoken at several events and in interviews for television, radio, print, and digital media outlets. You can follow Kate on Twitter at @LowbrowKate.