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Lessons from Political Ads


Friends,
As a political battleground state, Colorado has the joy of being bombarded with political ads. I’ve noticed a few genres. There is the ‘tell so-and-so not to kill baby seals’ (or some other terrible act). There’s the ‘she’s out of touch/dangerous for Colorado’. There’s also the rare ‘vote for me because I’m awesome’. My favorite, though, is the casual conversation ad, often used to support or oppose a ballot proposition. You’ve probably seen them. Two people engaged in a conversation, one of whom has a strong opinion about a measure while the other listens, agrees and states they will vote the same way. Hundreds of thousands (often millions) of dollars spent to model a conversation I can’t relate to or imagine ever having. Makes me wonder if they’ve ever worked. They must, otherwise why would special interests spend so much money? Let’s try one.

[Setting: two people standing next to a break room table].
[Person 1]: Hey Pat, those donuts look delicious, mind if I have one?
[Person 2]: Be my guest! You should have two, heck, have three!
[Person 1]: I shouldn’t, I’m watching my health
[Person 2]: I’m glad you mentioned your health. Did you know the average donut has 160 calories? That means that on a 2,000 calorie diet you could have 13 donuts a day. That’s three donuts for breakfast, five for lunch and five for dinner!
[Person 1]: Wow! I did not realize that. So, why the stigma on donuts?
[Person 2]: Big Agra would like you to eat more fruits and vegetables, so they’ve engaged in a smear campaign against the donut industry
[Person 1]: Good to know, I’m gonna buy a dozen right now!
[Person 2]: Don’t you mean a baker’s dozen?
[Person 1]: Nah, I’m trying to lose some weight.
[Sound of conversation dims with both smiling and having a good time]
[Narrator]: Paid for citizens for the decriminalization of donuts

Let me know if this ad worked on you.
Happy Friday!

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