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Search and the 2008 Presidential Elections: Most Campaigns Aren't There Yet

Michael Bassik over at techPresident spent some time clicking the names of likely '08 presidential candidates and found suprisingly few search ads.
* Four Republicans (Romney, McCain, Giuliani, and Tancredo) are using search to reach voters compared to two Democrats (Vilsack and Richardson). * 57% of the announced Republican candidates have purchased keywords on Google versus just 20% of the announced Democratic candidates. * Republicans are purchasing the names of their opponents (i.e. Romney purchased the keyword “John McCain”) whereas none of the Democrats seem to be cross-pollinating. * Although not to the same extent, only Republicans are advertising on both Google and Yahoo! search engines.
This matches what we found in November looking at Google advertising in close 2006 US Senate races: much less advertising than expected. Beyond candidate names, some quick Google searching produces no campaign ads on key issues, either. Zero campaign ads on global warming, war in iraq, or illegal immigration. Search will play an important role in the '08 elections, but the campaigns haven't gotten into gear yet.
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