• Project Title: America's Divide: Why Social Media Has Caused Our Country to Split

  • BASIS Advisor: Charles Hutchison

Since the dawn of American politics, politicians have been using mass marketing to advertise to American citizens. Only recently, politicians have begun to use modern social media outlets (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google) to advertise. With this trend of social media advertising, politicians also have new strategies to attract voters. Many are moving towards the extremes of their parties which may be contributing to the polarized society that we live in now. Many times, Democrats and Republicans cannot even have a civil conversation because they rally behind leaders with extreme policies. The goal of my senior project is to research how political campaigns use social media marketing, specifically Facebook, to capture voters and implement their campaign strategies. I will be tracking President Donald Trump’s and the Democratic Nominee’s Facebook advertisements and the effects of the advertisements. The final goal of my research is to determine how politicians use social media marketing effectively and why this has contributed to the polarization that we see today.