The Corner

McCain Goes Viral

Who would have thought it? The McCain campaign is now running more effectively viral ads than the Obama campaign. The Landstuhl ad, which I didn’t like (because of the factual problem) stoked a week’s worth of debate that was harmful to Obama. The “Celeb” ad has dominated cable chat and had 1.2 million YouTube hits the last time I looked. Now, there’s this brilliant “The One” ad noted by Kathryn earlier which will, I’m sure, be a YouTube sensation because it’s so fun to watch. None of these ads need to have–nor have they had, as far as I can tell–a big broadcast run to be effective. And, for political ads, they make relatively shrewd use of pop culture. The “Celeb” ad wouldn’t have had the impact without Britney and Paris. And “The One” ends with Charlton Heston. As everyone has said this week, this isn’t “worthy” of the old John McCain of 2000. Which is a good thing because: 1) it’s a new media and technology environment and he’s got to plug into it; 2) he’s running behind with fewer resources and less organization, so his campaign has to have a certain guerrilla element and viral video is a cheap way to drive the debate. Bravo…

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