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Advertising Memes US Presidential Election

Libertarian Super PAC supporting Gary Johnson spends double his TV spend on 'internet web memes'


By John McCarthy | Opinion editor

August 18, 2016 | 3 min read

The US presidential race is heating up, and while its largely a punch out between the Republican and Democrat tickets, the AlternativePAC super PAC supporting Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson’s campaign has just dropped $30,000 on web memes.

Johnson meme

Johnson meme

While Republican candidate Donald Trump reportedly hasn’t spent a dime on TV ads, contrasting Hillary Clinton’s mammoth $61m spend, Johnson has spent $15,000 on ads according to estimates from NBC and its partner Advertising Analytics.

An FEC filing from Johnson-supporting AlternativePAC has reportedly spent $30,000 on “internet web memes” to give the candidate a boost on social media channels. For the record, the expenditure sits at double Johnson’s $15,000 spend on TV ads.

Internet meme

Of course social media is playing a much larger part in this election cycle with Trump largely dependent on his digital footprint to reach his supporters – although time will tell whether media reports will gain him popular support outside the sphere of social media.

Matt Kibbe, head of AlternativePAC, told “There is real interest in the Libertarian ticket, and Gary Johnson has an historic opportunity.

“Our PAC will use data, technology, narrative and cutting edge social media to target disaffected constitutional conservatives, independents, and Bernie progressives looking for something different.”

The group has released two of the ‘memes’ - short video ads uploaded to YouTube that can be viewed here. On the whole, the super PAC may be keeping its cards close to its chest until closer to election day, hoping to seize the presidency with ‘doge’, ‘overly attached girlfriend’ and ‘Harambe’ memes.

Kibbe thinks $30,000 is a price worth paying if a viral meme can raise the candidate’s profile.

Advertising Memes US Presidential Election

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