Trump campaign plans huge digital ad buy ahead of DNC, as Biden airs first ad with Harris

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The Trump campaign will launch a four-day advertising blitz across some of the nation’s most visited digital platforms during the Democratic National Convention next week.

The DNC, which kicks off Monday, will be a four-day event with dozens of top Democrats giving speeches and voicing their support for the Democratic presidential candidate, Joe Biden.

But as some of the most influential party leaders address the nation, Trump will be aggressively inundating digital platforms with front-page takeovers and banner ads, targeting more than just political programs.


According to a report by The New York Times Saturday, The Trump campaign will be taking over the YouTube main page banner for a whopping 96 hours. The campaign has also reportedly bought up premium ad space on Hulu — meaning viewers cannot skip the Trump ads before watching their desired content.

“Unheard of scale & saturation,” Tim Murtaugh, the Trump campaign’s communications director tweeted Saturday.  “Never before seen, political or corporate. Millions more will watch TRUMP content than will watch the DNC.”

Other digital platforms such as the Washington Post, Fox News and the Wall Street Journal will all have ad space reserved on their homepages, purchased by the Trump campaign for a reported seven-figure amount, which could even surpass $10 million, depending on ad engagement.

“It’s great that Team Biden let the Trump campaign grab up the best premium real estate on the Internet during Joe’s big week,” Murtaugh told The New York Times. “We’ll show millions of Americans exactly how the radical, leftist takeover of Joe Biden is now complete.”

But a spokesperson for the Biden campaign called the aggressive advertising strategy a “stunt” and a waste of money.

“No smoke and mirrors charade can conceal that Donald Trump’s failed leadership has cost over 167,000 Americans their lives and driven the strong economy he inherited from the Obama-Biden Administration into one of the deepest recessions in our history,” Andrew Bates, director of Rapid Response for Biden’s campaign, told the publication Saturday.

The Biden campaign, which has purchased digital ad space on YouTube during the Republican National Convention alongside the Trump campaign, claims to have spent its advertising funds in a more strategic way.

Digital platforms like Hulu are being utilized to target audiences in specific states by Biden’s campaign, rather than homepage takeovers or banner ads seen nationwide.

But the ad wars are just getting started, and Americans can expect to see greater amounts of ad space consumed by politics as the Nov. 3 election date nears.


The Biden campaign raised $48 million in the 48 hours following Biden’s announcement for his vice presidential pick, Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., a figure that was first reported by Reuters and confirmed with the campaign by Fox News this week.

The Biden-Harris ticket also launched its first advertisement highlighting Harris’ commitment to public service. The 30-second clip was also the Biden campaign’s first bilingual ad, which will be running on YouTube and targeting Latino voters in Arizona and Florida, according to a report by ABC News Saturday.

The Trump campaign had been ahead in funds raised monthly until July, and it is too soon to tell who will come out on top in August – though the selection of Harris seems to have energized Democratic donors.

Biden announced that 150,000 first-time donors contributed within 48 hours of the VP announcement.


“It’s really palpable, the excitement,” Biden said.

Trump’s campaign, along with the RNC and joint fundraising committees, has raised $165 million so far just during the month of August, and closed July with $300 million on hand.

Biden’s campaign has not announced what it has raised so far in August, but finished July with $294 million in cash – just $6 million shy of the reported Trump campaign contributions.

Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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