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A dummy’s guide to negative advertising

PERHAPS the most tiring part of this election campaign, and the others that preceded it, was its negativity.
Nanjing Night Net

Scare tactics from both sidesbombarded voters, advertising was rife with misleading messages that bordered on being completely unethical, and thecharacter of candidates were unfairly scrutinised to the point ofirrelevance.

Largely, this advertising wasaccepted as part of the nature of a political campaign butunfortunately it hasled to the some voters making ill-informed decisions on election day.

Negative campaigning is easy when no positive alternative needs to be offered.

While highly unscrupulousand essentially undemocratic,the party apparatchiks must have an awful lot of fun concocting negative advertising.

With social mediaallowingfor relentlessnegative advertising outside a campaign,belowis a recipe for you to make your own negative campaign ad ahead of the nextelection and create your own mischief.

Use borrowed content from an overseas election campaign.

The United States can provide some bitter and borderline defamatory material.

The United Kingdom can toobut might leave you with a hangover of regret.

If you find nothing suitable abroad, just rehash.

Variations of Wendy Woods from Labor’s famous 1987 attack ads on John Howard’s election promises have been used by both the major parties in election campaigns for the past 20 years.

Characters like this bothstrike a chordwith, and fear within,middle-class suburbia.

You can also steal from outside of past political advertisements; it’s hard to wipe from memory the Grim Reaper AIDS awareness ads from the 1980s.

Just superimpose your opponent in front of that crying little blonde girl.

Make sure you highlight the disunity in the opposing team or party while conveniently neglecting that which exists in your own.

The leader needs to appear not only untrustworthy but unpopular and their loyal deputies need to appear as salivating, mutated beast-likeMachiavellians.

Advertisement visuals should exclusivelyblack and white, feature sinister and sleazy photographs of opponents, andmessages need to be misleading.

An out-of-context line from your opponent is perfect at best repeated adnauseam.

Dig deep –politicians say all sorts of things over the path oftheir careers that can be reused in the future to discredit them, fairly or unfairly.

All ads need to be set to foreboding music.

John Carpenter’s Halloween theme or something that raises a similar level of anxiety is recommended here.

Insults are memorable so make sure they are plenty of those.

The more catchy the insult, the more likely they are to be buried in the brain of the voter to be miraculouslyrecalled at the voting booth

Symbolism and metaphors arekey to a negative advertising campaign. It makes the voter believes that you are respecting their intelligence even though you really aren’t.

However, if you happen to have ethics, blatant lies should not be an accepted part of any political campaign and to do so just treats voters with contempt.

Youshould point out the weaknesses of youropponent and do so while presenting voters with a positive policy.

It’s well-established that negative advertising works sobe responsible with it.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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