I know, I know! The U.S. Presidential elections are still 2 years from now. So, why discuss these campaigns so early? Well, after we covered the 5 worst American political campaigns, it’s only fair that we also discuss the good ones. I mean, there are a lot of positives in the U.S. Presidential elections too. So, here we are with 5 awesome American political campaigns that left a solid impression on the audience.
1. Richard Nixon: Vote Like Your World Depended on it
This advertisement ticks all the boxes of a good campaign advert checklist.
It is emotive, promises change, explains future policy, and ends on a strong note. Also, the line “this time vote like your whole world depended on it” is a very impactful sentence. It emphasizes the significance of the election and the importance of voting for Nixon. But only if Nixon had the slightest inkling of the final outcome, he wouldn’t have promised Americans an “honorable exit” from the Vietnam war.
2. George H.W. Bush: Revolving Door
This 1988 campaign by George H.W. Bush attacked Democratic presidential challenger Michael Dukakis’ program which allowed prisoners to be released on weekend furloughs. Dukakis had launched the program while was the Massachusetts governor.
The advert projected Dukakis as someone who was soft on criminals and was, therefore, inimical to America’s future and the safety of its citizens. The ad cast a doubt on Dukakis’ ability to govern and protect public safety, which struck a major blow to his campaign.
3. Lyndon Johnson: Daisy Girl
This 1964 advert was part of Johnson’s re-election bid during the Cold War and has become one of the most popular campaign commercials of all time.
It was aired only once during an NBC broadcast of Monday Night at the Movies on 7th September 1964, after which it was deemed inappropriate for the American audience. However, that was enough to scare the pants off an already nervous electorate. Lyndon’s Republican opponent, Barry Goldwater, was portrayed as a dangerous right-wing extremist who’d bring the world to total annihilation if he were to come to power.
4. Ronald Raegan: Morning in America
The incumbent party person often fails to present a compelling “re-elect me, don’t change course” message through their political campaigning. The message either comes out too negative or bogged down. However, this 1984 advert from Ronald Raegan is the polar opposite of that.
The ad shows how well America’s been doing under the aegis of Raegan. From successfully restoring American optimism to reviving the American economy after a prolonged period of high inflation and unemployment, Raegan is projected as the man who made it all possible after Jimmy Carter’s tenure came to an end. So, why would anyone vote differently?
5. Barack Obama: Yes We Can
This 2008 advert for Barack Obama sums up everything that’s wrong with Mitt Romney in just 30 seconds. It shows Romney is simply too rich, uncaring, and out of touch to become the president.
The problem with attack ads is that they are often too personal, dirty, and unpleasant. But in this case, the ad resonates with the audience and drives home the message. This commercial is all the more effective because the accusations don’t come from Obama’s marketing team but from independent sources like newspapers and magazines. You know Romney’s campaign is done for when you hear, “Mitt Romney’s not the solution. He’s the problem”.
Like the worst political campaigns, this list is also not exhaustive and the advertisements have been placed in no particular order of preference. And again, if you are a part of any political campaign, you can take some valuable inspiration from these award-winning political ad campaigns to attain the electoral outcome that you’re looking for.