Thursday, January 26, 2012

From the Journals: Search Ads, Mobile Politics, Online Sources

Search ad impact, mobile political discourse, and online news source credibility are some of the interesting subjects in current academic journals. Public relations and advertising practitioners don't have the time, and often the access, to academic journals, so I periodically give a brief summary of articles I find interesting. I provide source information for anyone who wants to access them via an academic library.

Incremental Clicks: The Impact of Search Advertising. Journal of Advertising Research, 51(4), 643-647.
A meta-analysis of several hundred studies revealed that 89% of visits to advertisers' web sites were the result of search ad campaigns. Obviously this shows the value of search advertising as part of an effective campaign in which an objective is to drive traffic to a product page or other site.

Political Involvement in "Mobilized" Society: The Interactive Relationships Among Mobile Communication, Network Characteristics, and Political Participation. Journal of Communication, 61(6), 1005-1024.
This study looked at how mobile-mediated discourse is related to political participation. Essentially, political participation increases in large networks of like-minded individuals, but decreases when mobile technology is used in smaller homogenous networks. This would indicate that a strategy to increase mobile networks would be effective in efforts to get out the vote.

Source Cues in Online News: Is the Proximate Source More Powerful Than Distal Sources? Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 88(4), 719-736.
Readers have lots of sources of news online--a media site, an aggregator, a bookmarking page, shared links via Twitter or Facebook, and so on. This study showed that highly involved (i.e. deeply interested in subject, more seriously considering content) will consider both proximate and distal sources, or those that are close and identifiable as well as distant or second-hand sources. Meanwhile, readers of low-involvement are primarily influenced by a proximate source. This has interesting implications for messaging as well as a social media delivery strategy to reach and resonate with intended publics.

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