Emotion & Politics

Selling the candidates

Winning politicians know that emotion sells.

What we feel about candidates means more about whether we vote for or against them than most specific issues.

Fear is an emotion frequently used in political ads because it is such a powerful motivator. This spot only ran once, but once was enough.


Now watch how this candidate (who won, by the way) uses music, words and images to make you feel, and note how his story, which is true and personal, creates powerful emotions.


Why am I sharing this now?

First, because this blog is about creating emotional content and sharing examples helps make the abstract idea become more concrete.

Second, because like it or not, the political ad season has already begun. If you live in an important primary state, you’re already seeing slick, expensive ads for candidates who hope to win the Republican nomination.

Obama and the Democrats won’t be far behind.

So, as you watch each new ad, try to remain aware of how every part of the spot is designed to make you feel something.

It just seems that we should at least understand when and how we’re being manipulated.