A new ad from the Obama for America campaign signals just how niche his ad team intends to get in 2012. Pet Lovers for Obama, anyone?
The Obama family pup, Bo, is featured in ads seen on websites including liberal news site DailyKos today.
The ads link to a special Pet Lovers for Obama page, which notes the campaign has noticed “One, there are a lot of First Dog fans out there. Two, there is an enthusiasm for this campaign that extends to the furriest members of your families.” It adds, “That’s why we’ve launched Pet Lovers for Obama, a special way for pet lovers like you to be a part of this campaign.”
It is unclear whether the ad is targeted to people who have visited the Obama campaign site, or based on user interactions indicating pet ownership, or in some other way.
Ultimately, though, the campaign will be able to group people who have clicked on the ad, or signed up with Pet Lovers for Obama, to target ad and email messages that might be compelling to animal lovers. The fact that the Obama team and Democrats expect to run against GOP candidate Mitt Romney may have been part of the decision to create the pet-centric group and supporting ads. Tales of a Romney road trip during which the family dog traveled in a carrier on the roof of the car offended some animal rights activists and pet owners.
Or, it could simply be a sales tactic. OFA has made a point this election season of promoting Obama merchandise as a means of raising campaign funds. Among the swag for sale on BarackObama.com are a doggie bandana, collar, and bowl.
The Obama camp has already begun targeting specific messages to groups such as Hispanics and gays. In 2011, the campaign aimed ads at Facebook users with a message focused on the President’s support of repealing the Defense of Marriage Act. “Stand for Equal Rights,” stated the ads. “Repeal the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act. Join President Obama now!” The ads appeared to be targeted to people who like left-leaning and liberal groups on Facebook, including gay rights related groups.