Personalised political ads most effective on Facebook
In the US election year, political advertising on social networking sites such as Facebook is increasingly making use of personalised ads to target specific social media users.
According to the researchers, current elections will now more than ever before be including microtargeting on social networking sites in their campaign strategies.
“Future studies on whether personalising ads leads to more positive outcomes, such as mobilisation of citizens to vote, or to more negative outcomes, such as avoiding political content, will give us even further information on this tactic,” said Brenda K. Wiederhold from Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels.
Sanne Kruikemeier, Minem Sezgin and Sophie Boerman from University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands found that compared to a regular Facebook post, a political personalised Facebook ad activated a voter’s persuasion knowledge.
It made them less likely to share the information but only when the person noticed the label identifying the ad as being “sponsored.”
The authors define persuasion knowledge as an individual’s personal beliefs and knowledge about the motives and tactics related to advertising.
The effectiveness of online political microtargeting and the role of “persuasion knowledge” were examined in a paper published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking.