Politicians can use social media ads to buy votes for €4 per person

Online political adverts can sway voters

Denis Kornilov/Shutterstock

Political adverts on social media really can increase a candidate’s popularity, according to an analysis of German election results that suggests swaying a single voter requires around €4 of advertising spend.

Dominik Bär at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich in Germany and his colleagues analysed more than 21,000 Facebook and Instagram adverts posted by German political parties in the run-up to the 2021 federal elections. “We were interested in how these parties are advertising and how it related to the to the…