Former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump spent a historic $217 million advertising on the Facebook and Instagram social media platforms during the 2020 general election. This report provides analyses by the Illuminating 2020 project for how both campaigns used Facebook and Instagram advertising in the general election campaign, including targeting and messaging.
Earlier in the summer, Donald Trump consistently had a lower spend per 1000 views than Joe Biden. However, in many of the final weeks before the election, it was Joe Biden’s ads that had a lower spend per view.
In anticipation of a contentious presidential election, Facebook announced in September 2020 that it would make two changes to its treatment of ads about “social issues, elections or politics” in the US. This post provides an overview of these changes.
With the election finally decided, it is clear that the 2020 election was far from predictable. Several key voting demographics defied polling and created an unexpected outcome. In this article, we take a look at the “Latinos for Trump” Facebook page and how ads were used to influence this key demographic of voters.
As Election Day ballots are being cast, both candidates are hoping their ad spending efforts in Georgia have paid off. In this post, we take a look at how the candidates are using different types of Facebook ads to appeal to Georgia voters.
The Biden campaign has started running ads from a staggering 26 additional pages over the last two weeks, including pages for established media outlets. The ads the Biden campaign has run from pages for some of these media outlets are worth more closely scrutinizing.
Campaigns may have different strategies depending on if a state leans towards them or their opponent. In this post, Illuminating lead researcher Jeff Hemsley investigates if the Trump and Biden campaigns are using different Facebook ad strategies in six key contested states, including Iowa, Georgia, Ohio, North Carolina, Florida and Arizona.
Historically, youth voters (ages 18-29) have had the lowest voter turnout when participating in national and local elections. With 23 million eligible Gen Z voters this year, almost 16 million more than could vote in the 2016 election, this large but historically inactive voting demographic is a challenging yet necessary group of voters that presidential candidates Joe Biden and Donald Trump have targeted using Facebook and Instagram advertisements. Using the Illuminating Data, we are able to break down how each candidate is tackling the younger portion of this demographic (ages 18 to 24). Both candidates have different strategies on how to reach young adults, but employ these strategies in a way that targets social issues young Americans care about in attempts to mobilize this age group.