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Boomers versus Millennials: Online Media Influence on Media Performance and Candidate Evaluations

1
Department of Political Science, Oakland University, Rochester, MI 48309, USA
2
Department of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ 07666, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Martin J. Bull
Soc. Sci. 2016, 5(4), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci5040056
Received: 30 June 2016 / Revised: 8 September 2016 / Accepted: 18 September 2016 / Published: 29 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social Media and Political Participation)
Facebook posts, YouTube videos, tweets and wooing political bloggers have become standard practice in marketing political campaigns. Research has demonstrated the effect of new media on a host of politically-related behavior, including political participation, knowledge acquisition, group formation and self-efficacy. Yet, issues related to media trust, media performance and candidate evaluations have not been fully explored. In addition, much of the political marketing research looks exclusively at the Millennial age cohort, ignoring other age groups, particularly Baby Boomers. This case study addresses whether attention to traditional (i.e., television, hard-copy newspapers and radio) and online media sources (i.e., political candidate websites, television network websites, online newspapers, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and political blogs) about the 2012 U.S. presidential campaign influences Millennials and Baby Boomers’ media trust and performance ratings, as well as candidate evaluations. Panel surveys were completed by both age cohorts, Millennials (n = 431) and Baby Boomers (n = 360), during the last two weeks of the presidential election. Findings indicate that traditional sources, specifically television, rather than online sources are significantly linked to media trust and performance ratings among both Boomers and Millennials. Attention to traditional media for campaign information predicts Boomers’ candidate evaluations, whereas Millennials’ candidate evaluations are influenced by online sources, such as Facebook and candidate websites. View Full-Text
Keywords: Baby Boomers; Millennials; age cohorts; 2012 U.S. presidential election; social media; media trust; media performance; candidate evaluation; Facebook; Twitter Baby Boomers; Millennials; age cohorts; 2012 U.S. presidential election; social media; media trust; media performance; candidate evaluation; Facebook; Twitter
MDPI and ACS Style

Towner, T.; Lego Munoz, C. Boomers versus Millennials: Online Media Influence on Media Performance and Candidate Evaluations. Soc. Sci. 2016, 5, 56. https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci5040056

AMA Style

Towner T, Lego Munoz C. Boomers versus Millennials: Online Media Influence on Media Performance and Candidate Evaluations. Social Sciences. 2016; 5(4):56. https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci5040056

Chicago/Turabian Style

Towner, Terri, and Caroline Lego Munoz. 2016. "Boomers versus Millennials: Online Media Influence on Media Performance and Candidate Evaluations" Social Sciences 5, no. 4: 56. https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci5040056

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