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Air Wars
Television Advertising and Social Media in Election Campaigns, 1952-2016

Seventh Edition

Other Titles in:
Media & Public Opinion

May 2017 | 192 pages | CQ Press
Tracing the evolution of political advertising from 1952 through 2016, Darrell M. West returns with his much anticipated Seventh Edition of Air Wars: Television Advertising and Social Media in Election Campaigns, 1952-2016. Integrating the latest data and key events from the 2016 campaigns—including the most provocative presidential campaign in recent decades and the surprising victory of Donald Trump—West provides in-depth examination and insight into how candidates plan and execute advertising and social media campaigns, how the media covers these campaigns, and how American voters are ultimately influenced by them.

This new edition includes coverage of social media campaigning, nano-targeting strategies in a fragmented electorate, and thorough analysis of the 2016 presidential campaign, from the candidates’ use of Twitter to concerns over falsehoods and deception, the impact of ads and debates on candidate perceptions, and the risks to democratic elections from new campaign developments.

FREE POSTER: Fact or Fiction? Use this checklist to avoid the pitfalls posed by the rise of fake news
 
Tables
 
Preface
 
Pictorial History
 
1. The History of Communications
From Newspapers and Television to the Internet and Social Media  
Broadcasting Strategies  
Narrowcasting  
Microcasting  
Nanocasting  
Conclusion  
 
2. Effective Ads and Social Media Promotion
Principles of Advertising  
Production Techniques  
The Role of Money and Super PACs  
Effective Tweeting  
Third-Party Validation  
Conclusion  
 
3. Buying Air Time and Using Social Media
The Strategies of Ad Buying  
The Study of Ad Buys  
Ad Frequency and Diversification  
Vapor Ads  
Social Media Outreach  
Targeting Strategies  
Conclusion  
 
4. Messages
Substantive Content  
Prominent Ads  
The Paucity of Policy Appeals  
Shifts Over Time  
The Rise of Internet Sites  
The Rise of Negative Advertising  
The Objects of Negativity  
Conclusion  
 
5. Media Coverage
The Increasing Coverage of Ads  
Horse-Race Coverage of Ads  
“Daisy,” “Daisy II,” and the “Revolving Door”  
Swift Boat Veterans Ads  
2008 Ads  
2012 Ads  
2016 Ads  
Conclusion  
 
6. Learning About the Candidates
Citizens’ Knowledge and Evaluations of Candidates  
The Impact of the Campaign  
Ads and the Vote  
Conclusion  
 
7. Setting the Agenda
The Media’s Role in Agenda Setting  
Policy and Campaign Components of the Agenda  
The Influence of Individual Ads  
A Fixed Agenda  
A Fluid Agenda  
It’s Still the Economy, Stupid!  
Shifting the Focus  
A Chaotic World  
Conclusion  
 
8. Playing the Blame Game
Blame Dukakis  
Blame Bush  
Blame Terrorists  
Blame Bush and McCain  
Blame Romney  
Blame the Establishment  
Conclusion  
 
9. Communications in Congressional Elections
Features of Congressional Campaigns  
Historical Congressional Ads  
Clinton Versus Giuliani and Lazio in 2000  
2008 Senate Campaigns  
2012 House and Senate Campaigns  
2016 House and Senate Campaigns  
Conclusion  
 
10. Communications and Democratic Elections
Democratic Expectations  
The Risk of Manipulation  
The Importance of Fact-Checking  
Lessons of Campaign Communications  
Slicing and Dicing the Electorate  
What Can Be Done  
Conclusion  
 
Appendix: Memorable Ads, 1984–2016
 
Notes
 
Index
 
About the Author

Air Wars has always helped my students develop a better understanding of the traditional political communication theories. West does a great job with the coverage of traditional advertising methods and historical ads.”

Heather Evans
Sam Houston State University

Air Wars is a remarkably valuable text for those who are interested in learning about paid media advertising in American election campaigns. West does an admirable job of devoting attention to all aspects of the advertising process: the behind the scenes strategic considerations of the producers, the coverage by the news media, as well as their effects on the audience. Air Wars has become a permanent part of my Media and Politics course because of its thorough examination of the role played by paid media in modern campaigns.”

Robert Dion
University of Evansville

Air Wars is an engaging and well-written book on campaigns and campaign effects. It provides a comprehensive examination of television advertising in election campaigns. In particular, West supports his discussion of agenda-setting and priming, which is among the clearest I have read, with relevant examples from both historical and recent campaigns.”

Matthew Eshbaugh-Soha
University of North Texas

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 2


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ISBN: 9781506329833
£37.99