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Digital News to Watch: Which party is spending the most on online political ads?

In this week’s digital news to watch, Google is launching Local Services Ads on Maps, integrating them into its iOS app to boost lead generation by leveraging user search intent. In UK politics, Labour is outspending other parties on online political ads, focusing on marginal constituencies. Amidst the general election, consumer confidence in the UK economy is rising, showing a positive trend in GfK’s latest Consumer Confidence Barometer. However, the hollowness of corporate Pride is evident as many companies scale back their Pride Month marketing. Women’s Aid launched the “No More Years of Hurt” campaign to address the increase in domestic abuse incidents during the Euro Tournament. Meanwhile, Amazon unveiled Ad Relevance, a cookie-less ad-targeting solution using AI and first-party data to improve ad accuracy and reduce costs.

Google is launching Local Services Ads on Maps

Google is integrating Local Services Ads into its iOS Maps app, making it mandatory for advertisers using Local Services Ads. This will leverage the intent of users searching for local services on Maps to increase lead generation. Advertisers cannot opt-out of this without pausing their Search ads. The ads will be automatically created from existing data, and billing remains the same as Search ads, charging only for qualified leads.

Which party is spending the most on online political ads?

Digital advertising influence continues to grow in UK politics with all groups pushing across key areas.

The spending patterns of political parties reveal their priorities and concerns. Labour is investing heavily across the country, aiming for a significant majority, while the Conservatives are focusing on defending their strongholds and spending less overall.

A map created by Who Targets Me (WTM) in partnership with Sky News shows which party is spending the most on Facebook and Instagram ads in each constituency. Labour leads with over £2.7m spent, targeting a wide range of areas and outperforming the Conservatives and Reform Party in England and Wales, as well as the SNP in central Scotland.

The Conservatives, having spent just over £1m on political ads, are reducing their expenditure over time. The Liberal Democrats are focusing on the “A30 corridor in the South West,” challenging Conservative seats. The Greens and Conservatives are competing in South Wales and the West Country, while Reform is targeting southern Lincolnshire.

This data aligns with the latest YouGov MRP poll predictions, highlighting key battlegrounds. Labour’s extensive spending reflects its strategy in marginal constituencies. The map, which is regularly updated, will provide valuable insights into party strategies as the election approaches.

The hollowness of corporate Pride

Corporations — entities that have long capitalised on social causes to chase profit — seem to be telling on themselves with an apparent pullback on Pride Month marketing this year. “There’s been a definite scaling back in both big and small ways,” Joanna Schwartz, a marketing professor who studies outreach to LGBTQ audiences at Georgia College & State University, told Vox. “I had expected some brand caution, but this year seems [to be] a near full-scale retreat.” Multiple marketing experts Vox spoke to noted that some stores have toned down their messaging or decided to offer less merchandise — and, as the Associated Press put it, “at some chains, there’s no trace of Pride at all”.

Consumers feeling ‘optimistic’ about UK economy in run-up to general election

Consumer confidence continued on an upward trajectory in June, according to GfK’s latest Consumer Confidence Barometer. The figures could provide an opportunity for marketers to “invest in their brand”, says GfK. The overall consumer confidence score increased by three points from May to -14 in June, with the general economic situation over the last 12 months seeing the greatest increase, up seven points to -32, a marked improvement on last year’s -54. People are also feeling cheerier about the general economic situation over the next 12 months, which saw a six-point month-on-month increase to -11, again, more positive than the same month last year when it was -25. In line with this, the major purchase index was up three points to -23, showing people believe it is a better time to make big purchases such as furniture or electrical goods. The consumer confidence scores published today (21 June) will be the last before the general election on 4 July.

Women’s Aid targets darker side of football with Euros campaign

As the Euros Tournament kicks off, Women’s Aid have launched a campaign, “No More Years of Hurt,” to spotlight the surge in domestic abuse correlated with football matches, with abuse incidents rising 38% when England loses. Building on their 2022 “He’s Coming Home” initiative, the campaign uses football-related slogans to promote change and raise awareness ahead of the general election. The aim is to address what they describe as an “epidemic of domestic abuse” and push for meaningful societal changes.

Amazon unveils cookie-less ad-targeting solution 

Amazon recently introduced a new cookie-less ad-targeting solution called Ad Relevance at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. This tool aims to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) and first-party data to analyse a vast array of browsing, purchasing, and streaming behaviours, thereby enabling more accurate ad targeting without the need for third-party cookies. Ad Relevance matches these insights with real-time content viewing to deliver relevant ads across devices and channels.

The solution aims to improve addressability for previously anonymous impressions, potentially reducing cost per thousand impressions (CPMs) by up to 34% and enhancing cost per click (CPC) by 8.8%. It is integrated with Amazon’s demand-side platform (DSP) and supports other Amazon Ads offerings like Amazon Audiences and Contextual Targeting​.

For more information on any of these stories, or for support with your digital marketing efforts, get in touch with our team. Send us an email to and we’d be happy to discuss your requirements.

Tom Pickard  - Modo25
Tom Pickard
Tom Pickard  - Modo25
Tom Pickard

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