Political interest groups are using search engine advertising as a way to sway users’ views one way or another on a specific issue. Their ads often appear after a search of a topic associated with a political issue.
The recent healthcare debate has brought about an increase in the sales of such ads. A Google search for “euthanasia” yields an ad with a link to moveon.org, a liberal organization. The link leads to a page titled “Top Five Health Care Reform Lies-and How to Fight Back.” It is the only ad that appears on the side of the page.
The interest groups often change the titles of their ads to keep up with new developments appearing the news. The activity has grown significantly in past months, dating back to last year’s election. Peter Greenberger, Google’s Director of Political Advertising, said, “[In] the course of a year or the last 18 months, the way people are using the online medium has dramatically changed.” Last year, Google received over $15 million for advertising from the Obama and McCain campaigns.
The main reason that advocacy groups are campaigning via online advertising is its reasonable price, with some organizations spending only a few thousand dollars for certain entries. As Internet and search engines use continues to increase, online advertising will remain an effective option for businesses.