Monday, June 17, 2024

Effectiveness of Media Campaigns may Determine Latino Turnout in November

Political consultants argue that McCain and Obama must not rely exclusively on Hispanic media to reach Latinos…

Both Barack Obama and John McCain are heavily courting Hispanic voters, a key demographic in swing states like Florida, New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado. That means a heavy dose of Spanish-language television and radio advertising. But some political consultants who specialize in targeting Hispanic voters say focusing solely on Spanish-language media leaves other effective means of targeting on the table.

“If you want to reach the hardcore middle-class Hispanic voter, you can’t do it completely on Hispanic TV,” Wiscovitch says, noting that for many Hispanic voters Spanish-language television is not always the primary source of news and information. “The Hispanic media is influential, but it shouldn’t be the only focus, and it doesn’t get you the youth.”

So far, both Obama and McCain have run ads on Spanish-language radio and TV, in most cases garnering significant earned media attention from those outreach efforts. The Obama campaign has promised a massive Spanish-language advertising blitz between now and Election Day. The McCain campaign has plans for at least ten ads targeting Hispanic voters.

“With Latinos the big issue isn’t persuasion, its registration and turnout,” says pollster Craig Charney. “So one question is whether Obama can effectively use the social networks he’s tapped into to energize those voters.”

Politics Magazine