A look at the data for Facebook advertisements for the latest week reveals that spending is declining. Political parties spent only Rs 2.2 crore on such advertisements, according to Facebook’s Ad Library report. This is an 18.4 per cent fall from the previous week. It also marks the second successive weekly spending fall. The previous week had shown an 11.5 per cent decline.
The latest weekly spend figure is the lowest in over a month. It takes cumulative spends on Facebook to Rs 25.3 crore since February. The total number of advertisements on Facebook since then has been 112,097.
The data is based on Facebook’s weekly update on advertising covering politics and on issues of national importance.
The Indian National Congress emerged as the top spender for the week ending May 11, with Rs 40.3 lakh. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was second with Rs 28.12 lakh. The All India Trinamool Congress was fifth with spends of Rs 6.8 lakh. The BJP has tended to dominate spending on most weeks, and is still the top spender overall.
The Indian National Congress has come up to the second spot. The rest of the top five continue to be those supporting the ruling party. They include ‘Bharat Ke Mann Ki Baat’ and ‘My First Vote For Modi’.
The top term searched is ‘BJP’. The second is ‘Modi’, while ‘Congress’ is fourth.
Search engine major Google also provides a similar report. The cumulative spends on Google are in excess of Rs 27.4 crore. There have been 14,837 advertisements on Google platforms.
The Indian National Congress also makes it to the top-five list in terms of Google spends. It was absent in the previous week. The latest data shows it emerging third with total spends of Rs 2.7 crore. The BJP topped the list. At Rs 17.1 crore, it accounted for 62.4 per cent of overall political spending on Google. Others on the list include a number of regional parties.
Southern parties dominate among regional players. Tamil Nadu’s Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam is second. The Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana is fourth. Auburn Digital Solutions is fifth with advertisements that seem to be supporting Andhra Pradesh Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N. Chandrababu Naidu.
Google also provides a state-wise breakup. The highest spends were in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh. These five states accounted for Rs 6 of every Rs 10 spent on political advertising on Google this election season.