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Ohio Senate candidates courting Snapchat users one swipe at a time

Posted at 5:31 PM, Aug 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-05 18:08:47-04

Beginning with Rob Portman, Ohio’s Senate candidates and their supporters are courting millennial Snapchat users with paid ads in the form of Geofilters. 

Portman’s was the first GOP Senate campaign to purchase a Snapchat Geofilter

The filters are special graphical overlays available for users in a specific geographical location. They’ve been used at Cleveland Indians games or to highlight specific political issues.

“The Portman for Senate campaign is running an aggressive, 21st Century tech-savvy campaign,” a spokesperson said in a statement to newsnet5.com.   

During the Republican National Convention, the Ted Strickland for Senate Campaign also launched a sponsored Snapchat Geofilter. 

“To highlight how Senator Portman is ‘All In’ for Trump and will be unable to hide his support for Trump during the RNC in Cleveland,” a statement from the campaign read, in part.  

Portman supporters like the National Republican Senatorial Committee have also taken out a series of Geofilters to highlight Portman’s positions on certain issues. 

Political analyst Tom Sutton told newsnet5.com that the social media strategy is a smart one to woo millennial voters, who make up the majority of Snapchat’s estimated 100 million active users. 

“It’s a little bit like war, you use every weapon available, particularly the new ones coming online,” Sutton said. “And these days things like Snapchat are the newest weapons in the political wars.” 

In 2015, millennials, defined as those between the ages 18-34,, now number 75.4 million, surpassed the 74.9 million Baby Boomers (ages 51-69), according to a Pew Research Center Report released in April.