U.S. President Donald Trump has become the biggest political advertising buyer on Google’s platform, surpassing Michael Bloomberg, according to data release this week by the internet giant.
Trump has spent US$64.7 million since May 2018, Google’s political ad transparency website shows. That is split between two groups: the Trump Make America Great Again Committee and Donald J. Trump for President Inc.
Heavy spending on homepage ads on Google’s YouTube video service, and a marketing blitz around the recent Republican National Convention helped to push Trump past Bloomberg’s US$62.2 million outlay, according to data updated by Google on Sept. 1. (Bloomberg is the founder and owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.)
Political ads have gone digital, with Trump’s campaign taking advantage of the internet industry’s targeting ability to help him win during the 2016 election. New rules set by the largest technology companies have made micro-targeting political ads more difficult, but broadcast messages like buying the top spot on YouTube’s home page remain popular. Trump has already purchased the homepage ad for the key days leading up the Nov. 3 election, Bloomberg reported in February.