You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

The Importance of Being Everywhere: VA's McDonnell and NYC's Bloomberg Go Full Google

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, November 2 2009

Oh, those time-honored traditions of democracy. Spreading leaflets door-to-door. Holding up signs at busy intersections. And, at least in recent elections, the Google network blast. Two candidates whose chances for victory tomorrow range from pretty likely to go-ahead-and-bet-the-rent-money-on-it are taking no chances, employing the somewhat cutting-edge Google network blast technique to blanket the Internet experience of potential voters in their regions with advertisements touting their bona fides.

A Google rep confirms that those of you reading from the Virginia area or New York City might have already noticed. Virginia's Republican nominee for governor Bob McDonnell and New York City mayoral candidate Mike Bloomberg are both running Google blasts, where their geo-targeted ads pop up on blogs, other websites, and Gmail. As will come as no surprise to anyone who has followed Mayor Mike's path to re-election, the Google rep describes Bloomberg's Google Ad buy as "massive."

For McDonnell's part, new media advisor Mindy Finn confirms that a Google Ad blast is running on behalf of the candidate today, targeted at both voters spending the day in Virginia and those many Virginians who spend their days working in DC. McDonnell's Google Ad buy started up at 9am, and will run through 5pm. McDonnell's buy seems to be partial to tech-focused sites. That's not the craziest approach given Virginia's vibrant tech industry and venture capitalist community. (Added bonus: putting the ad blast in the face of all those tech writers who are well positioned to write about the technique.) McDonnell, it seems, is popping up on Android blogs, and Google passes along a screen cap of how McDonnell is showing his face on that mecca of all tech business geekery known as TechCrunch.

How much does all this ammunition cost? Google, for one, is mum about what sort of appropriation of campaign funds it takes to unleash such overwhelming force.