Study: Hillary Clinton's election loss likely due in part to poorly run campaign, advertising

A new study conducted by the Wesleyan Media Project found that ineffective advertising, including messages they claim were "devoid of policy discussions," likely played a role in Hillary Clinton's 2016 election loss to Donald Trump.

New research has found that Hillary Clinton's loss in the 2016 presidential election may have been related to her campaign's ineffective use of advertising.

According to a news release, the Wesleyan Media Project study concluded that "Clinton's unexpected losses came in states in which she failed to air ads until the last week."

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Graphs of TV ads in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania show late-term spikes by Clinton's campaign which were much more pronounced than those in favor of Trump.

The release also says the paper determined that "Clinton's message was devoid of policy discussions in a way not seen in the previous four presidential contests."

The team analyzed the contents of advertising during the presidential races dating back to 2000; compared to her fellow Republican and Democratic candidates, Clinton appeared to spend the most time on personal issues and the least amount of time on policy.

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Clinton supporters are fleeing her election night party in tears

A supporter of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton watches and waits at her election night rally in New York, U.S., November 8, 2016.

(REUTERS/Carlos Barria)

Supporters of U.S Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton react as a state is called in favour of her opponent, Republican candidate Donald Trump, during a watch party for the U.S. Presidential election, at the University of Sydney in Australia, November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Reed

A supporter of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton watches and waits at her election night rally in New York, U.S., November 8, 2016.

(REUTERS/Carlos Barria)

Musician Lagy Gaga sits in her car after staging a protest against Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump outside Trump Tower in New York City after midnight on election day November 9, 2016. Donald Trump stunned America and the world, riding a wave of populist resentment to defeat Hillary Clinton in the race to become the 45th president of the United States. The Republican mogul defeated his Democratic rival, plunging global markets into turmoil and casting the long-standing global political order, which hinges on Washington's leadership, into doubt.

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A supporter uses his smartphone as others leave Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Hillary Clinton's election night rally in New York, U.S., November 9, 2016.

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Supporters of Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Hillary Clinton react at the election night rally in New York, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Adrees Latif

A person talks on the phone at Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center November 9, 2016 in New York City. Clinton is running against Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump to be the 45th President of the United States.

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At attendee reacts while kneeling on the floor during an election night party for 2016 Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton at the Javits Center in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. 

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An attendee reacts while sitting on the floor during an election night party for 2016 Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton at the Javits Center in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016.

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A supporter of U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton reacts at her election night rally in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
A supporter of U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton reacts at her election night rally in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 8, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
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Nevertheless, the study points out that the 2016 election was not typical in its use of advertising which the authors attribute to "the unusual nature of the presidential campaign with one unconventional candidate and the other using an unconventional message strategy, among other non-advertising related factors."

Although the impact of advertising in 2016 on the outcome of the general election race was likely minimal, we urge caution in concluding that television advertising is no longer effective."

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