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Why a wave of social media ads may signal a potential White House run by Florida's Ron DeSantis – The Globe and Mail

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U.S. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference, in Orlando, Fla., on Feb. 24.OCTAVIO JONES/Reuters

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a rising Republican star, has been careful not to nurture growing speculation that he will make a presidential bid in 2024. He has brushed off questions about his political ambitions, while the party’s presumptive front-runner, Donald Trump, repeatedly hints he will run again.

But there are signs that DeSantis could be preparing for a White House run even as he campaigns for another term as governor in November’s midterm elections.

A Reuters analysis of DeSantis’ social media ads shows he has dramatically expanded his out-of-state ads in recent months, an indicator, say some political analysts, that he may be laying the groundwork for a national campaign.

In the first three months of this year, political ads sent through DeSantis’ Facebook and Instagram pages were overwhelmingly concentrated in Florida, as one would expect from a man running for office in the state.

But by the April-June period, they were spread roughly evenly between Florida and the rest of the country, according to a Reuters analysis of regional spending data for social media ads compiled by New York University’s Cybersecurity for Democracy project.

DeSantis’ increase in out-of-state ads suggests a move toward building a nationwide network of supporters, said three Republican strategists, including Ron Bonjean, who was an adviser to former president Trump’s 2016 presidential transition team.

“It’s an important part of the campaign playbook and can help him build support quickly should he eventually throw his hat in the ring,” Bonjean said, adding that the timing matters as Trump could declare his candidacy “at any moment” and potentially dent DeSantis’ momentum.

DeSantis may, however, simply be using his national profile to seek a broader donor base for his re-election campaign, said Travis Ridout, an expert on campaign ads at Washington State University, although the Republican is a fundraising giant who has already built a $100-million plus war chest.

Dave Abrams, a senior adviser on DeSantis’ re-election campaign, did not comment on the ads, but said the governor was fully focused on “winning big” in Florida this November.

“We’ll let the self-described ‘experts’ do what they do best: pontificate endlessly,” he told Reuters.

Two sources close to DeSantis confirmed to Reuters he is building a national database of voter contact information.

Political campaigns in the United States use such data, collected from many sources, to create detailed profiles of voters to inform their strategies and tactics. Gathering data via social media was a key tool for Trump’s own 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns. Any challenger would have to compete against his formidable database of small donors.

Social media ads often prompt supporters for their names, e-mail addresses and other information that campaigns can use for future fundraising appeals and invitations to rallies.

Should DeSantis launch a White House bid, he would be retracing the steps of past presidential candidates including U.S. Senator Corey Booker, a Democrat who boosted out-of-state social media ads ahead of the 2018 midterm elections before running for president in 2020, Ridout said.

Many of DeSantis’ recent ads were concentrated in swing states like Pennsylvania and North Carolina, with ad viewers asked to fill out surveys with questions like: “Are YOU feeling pain at the pump thanks to Joe Biden?”

Other ads ask for support to fight “the dishonest corporate media,” “woke corporations” and the left’s “socialist agenda.”

After clicking on an ad, users are directed to a DeSantis web page that asks for their opinion on the issue and contact information.

Compared to television, ads on social media are cheap for political campaigns. DeSantis spent only around $300,000 on Facebook and Instagram ads in the first half of 2022, according to the NYU data.

“Small-dollar donors are worth more than the money involved,” said Ohio-based Republican strategist Mark Weaver. “They can be volunteers and force multipliers of your message far outside of the borders of Florida.”

In contrast, the governors of the other biggest states – Republican Greg Abbott and Democrats Gavin Newsom of California and Kathy Hochul of New York – have overwhelmingly focused on their home states in social media ads this year.

To be sure, there are many bigger steps that American presidential hopefuls need to take before launching any White House campaign. Making a pilgrimage to early voting states in the nomination process, such as Iowa, is one of them. Trump’s former vice president, Mike Pence, has already made the trip. DeSantis has not.

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

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Netflix is not in deep trouble. It's becoming a media company – CNN

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New York (CNN Business)Netflix has had a terrible 2022. In April, it said it lost subscribers for the first time since 2011. Its stock has tumbled more than 60% so far this year.

Yet its recent struggles may not be the start of a downward spiral or the beginning of the end for the streaming giant. Rather, it’s a sign that Netflix is becoming a more traditional media company.
Netflix (NFLX) was originally valued as a Big Tech company, part of the Wall Street acronym, “FAANG,” which stood for Facebook (FB), Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Netflix and Google (GOOG). Wall Street once valued the company at about $300 billion — a number on par with many Big Tech companies that Netflix’s business model ultimately couldn’t live up to.
“I think Netflix was extremely overvalued,” Julia Alexander, director of strategy at Parrot Analytics, told CNN Business. “Unlike those companies that have different tentacles, Netflix does not have a lot of tentacles.”
But Netflix was never really a tech company.
Yes, it relied on subscriber growth like many companies in the tech world, but its subscriber growth was built on having films and TV shows that people wanted to watch and pay for. That’s more a like a studio in Hollywood than a tech company in Silicon Valley.
Netflix looked a lot more like a tech company than, say, Disney, Comcast, Paramount or CNN parent company Warner Bros. Discovery. But as those traditional media companies start to look a lot more like Netflix, Netflix in turn is starting to take page out of its rivals’ playbooks: It’s going to start serving ads and it has been releasing some shows over the course of weeks and months rather than all at once.
Netflix has said that its cheaper ad tier and clampdown on password sharing may come next year. It’s partnering with Microsoft (MSFT) for its ad business.
“I think in many ways the moves Netflix are making suggest a transition from tech company to media company,” Andrew Hare, a senior vice president of research at Magid, told CNN Business. “With the introduction of ads, crackdown on password sharing, marquee shows like ‘Stranger Things’ experimenting with a staggered release, we are seeing Netflix looking more like a traditional media company every day.”
Hare added that Netflix’s former business strategy, which was “once sacrosanct is now being thrown out the window.”
“Netflix once forced Hollywood deeply out of its comfort zone. They brought streaming to the American living room,” he said. “Now it appears some more conventional practices could be what Netflix needs.”
At Netflix right now, “a lot of these strategic moves are being made as they mature and move into the next phase as a company,” noted Hare. That includes focusing on cash flow and revenue rather than just growth.
“In other words, old school business,” he said.
— CNN Business’ Moss Cohen contributed to this report.

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City of Brandon – August 7th Media Release – City of Brandon –

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For the last 24 hours:

Drinking in Public Leads to Multiple Criminal Charges:

At about 11:40 AM Saturday morning, it was reported that a male subject was acting bizarrely in and around the 700 block Rosser Ave.  When located in the area, the 21 year-old was drinking an alcoholic beverage so was detained under the LGCCA.  He was subsequently found to be in breach of multiple conditions of two separate Probation Orders.  Search incident to arrest revealed a machete in his backpack.  He disclosed taking an unknown quantity of unknown pills, so was released on appropriate police imposed conditions as he was receiving medical assessment and treatment.  He is to appear in Court on October 3rd, facing one count of possessing a weapon and six counts of failing to comply with a Probation Order.

Break & Enters:

An unlocked attached residential garage on Falcon Crescent was entered overnight on Friday and tools were stolen.  Some of those were recovered strewn across neighbouring property.

A resident in the 300 block 27th Street reported that the detached garage had been forcibly entered overnight Thursday – Friday.  The complainant was unsure if anything had been stolen but the walk-through door frame had been damaged during the incident.

Theft With Threat:

At about 3:50 PM Saturday afternoon, it was reported that a resident in the 700 block 20th Street had been robbed of a bicycle approx. 20 minutes prior, while in his back yard.  Police attended and spoke with the victim who related that an unknown male came into his back yard and stole an old bicycle of no value, and brandished a knife while doing so. The suspect left without further incident.  The suspect was described as Indigenous in appearance, 6’5”, skinny, wearing a blue hoodie, black bandana and hat.  The knife was pulled from the front right pants’ pocket.

Arrest Warrants:

A 28 year-old female was encountered in the 700 block 18th Street Saturday evening, with personal effects strewn about a business vestibule.  A records query revealed a warrant for arrest for failing to comply with a Probation Order. She was arrested and released on scene with a court date of October 3rd.

Just before midnight Saturday night, Brandon RCMP advised having a 51 year-old male in custody on the strength of a BPS held warrant for arrest for sexual assault.  RCMP had attended to a complaint in Glenboro and encountered the accused.  He is held in custody and will appear before the court later today.

Motor Vehicle Collision With Injuries:

At 11:15 PM Saturday night, 911 reported a two vehicle collision at the intersection of Russell Street and Madison Crescent.  Two occupants were stuck in a vehicle that had rolled over onto its’ side.  The investigation revealed that the driver of the rolled vehicle failed to stop at the stop sign. That driver was transported to BRHC by EMS with non-life threatening injuries. The second driver was uninjured.

Others:

Several people were detained from separate incidents, for their own safety or to prevent a breach of the peace, due to their level of intoxication.  They will be held in custody until sober enough to care for themselves.

RELEASE AUTHORIZED BY:

A/Staff Sergeant Dallas Lockhart, #101

C Platoon

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Anyone with information on any unsolved crime is asked to call Brandon Crime Stoppers at 204-727-(TIPS) 8477, www.brandoncrimestoppers.com or by texting BCSTIP and your message to CRIMES (274637).  Crime Stoppers pays up to $2000.00 cash for information that leads to the solution of a crime.

CRIME STOPPERS 204-727-TIPS

 

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Social Media Buzz: Taiwan, Indiana Abortion Ban, Kim and Pete – Bloomberg

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Social Media Buzz: Taiwan, Indiana Abortion Ban, Kim and Pete  Bloomberg



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