OCCET Action ran an in-language advertisement campaign for Proposition 15 in Korean language newspapers, radio, TV, Facebook, YouTube and Google during the 2020 elections cycle, from October 4 to November 3. This internal report describes the program’s impact in consolidating Korean American voter support.
To ensure the advertisements’ effectiveness, OCCET Action partnered with Ahri for Justice, one of OCCET Action’s partner organizations with a presence in the local Korean American community. The ads were co-branded between Ahri for Justice and OCCET Action.
|TV||10/22-11/2||est. 200k viewers|
OCCET Action developed a new website, KoreanVote.com, to ensure high-information-voters would have all the information they needed to be persuaded and educate other voters with confidence about Prop 15. The website launched in early September 2020 with basic Prop 15 information, and then expanded on October 18 with in-depth arguments countering anti-15 attacks. The English equivalent of September’s version is OCCET Action’s current Prop 15 webpage.
The website was then linked to all in-language promotion of Prop15 and OCCET Action’s field outreach to voters, as a resource for voters to find more information about the measure.
During the cycle, there were 11,185 visits to the website; average visit duration was 7 seconds.
The website covers all aspects of Prop 15:
- A quick overview of Prop 15 and the main points, along with the video message from Joshua Park;
- The budget crisis in education in California with links to primary sources;
- How property tax works in California in a way that gives an unfair advantage to major corporations with actual dollar figures;
- How Prop15 represents a “leveling of the field” for small businesses and how the income is highly focused on the largest corporations;
- Summarizing the study demonstrating that commercial rent is unlikely to be increased after Prop 15.
OCCET Action placed 1/3 page and 1/2 page newspaper ads between 10/14 and 11/3 in the Korea Times. The first iteration focused on a simple, basic messaging of “Prop 15 supports schools, Korean community, and small businesses”. The second version maintained this basic message, and covered in more depth the need for funding for education and how Prop15 is actually good for small businesses, and countered the opposition.
Korea Times is one of the two mainstream Korean language newspapers in the United States with a national presence – the other one being Korea Daily. Korea Daily was excluded from the advertising for consistently promoting pro-Trump and Qanon conspiracy theories, to the point of running anti-mail ballot stories that could result in depressing the voter turnout in the Korean American community. Both Korea Times and Korea Daily have reported 200,000 readers in subscription and business circulation combined in Southern California to the New America Media’s Ethnic Media National Survey in the past.
The ads received various promotional upgrades and exposure amounted to a total value of $17,200.
Television & Online Video
OCCET Action ran a video ad of a Ahri for Justice canvasser and UCLA student Joshua Park speaking up in support of Prop 15 on KBS America, a terrestrial TV station (Ch.44) able to reach 1.3 million Korean speaking viewers in Southern California. The video was also promoted as Facebook and YouTube video ads.
No viewership statistics are available for KBS. Online viewership is included as part of online ad impression figures.
Hello, my name is Joshua Park. I served in the Navy for 8 years, and currently attend UCLA.
Prop 15 is a bill to help working people, everyday people like us.
The biggest corporations monopolize the markets and out-price small businesses. Prop 15 would apply fair property taxes to these corporations, and use the revenue for local schools, clinics, and help people like us.
At UCLA we also see research and experiments being unable to be funded due to financial shortfalls. And we see students in our schools not receiving quality education due to budget cuts resulting in larger classrooms.
I hope we can pass Prop 15 to improve the quality of our education, to develop tomorrow’s leaders and workers, and to achieve technological advancement, which is the foundation of economic growth.
The kind of society we envision is not one where the top 10% takes 70% of the wealth – instead, it is one where all of us who put our effort in it can live well. This is why I support Proposition 15. Yes on 15!
OCCET Action ran a series of Facebook & Instagram image, Facebook video, Google Search keyword, and Google image display ads during 10/4-11/3, generating 540,841 impressions.
Ahri for Justice, the OCCET Action partner with a base in the Korean American community, ran a preliminary round of Facebook ads during 10/4-10-14. These ads garnered 86 comments with an overwhelming majority of them against Prop 15. Some revisions were made to the ads, in particular to address the anti-Chinese commentary, on 10/11. This first round of ads generated 170,872 impressions and 1,324 clicks.
Million Voters Project Action Fund (MVPAF) ran English language ads to Orange County voters through OCCET Action’s Facebook page. MVPAF’s ad statistics are much higher than OCCET Action’s, and are not included in this report’s overall numbers.
A second round of ads ran on Facebook. The ads can be divided thematically into four groups:
- Ads without a specific focus, aimed to the general Korean speaking user base: 01 02 03 04
- Ads highlighting businesses and countering the opposition: 21 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33
- Ads focusing on education, aimed at Korean users age 30-55. (Expected to be parents of school-age children): 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
- Other experimental messages – emphasizing infrastructure, firefighters for hilly areas, health care for seniors, affordable housing for low-income users, and Kamala Harris and Jane Kim to Bay Area users.
Google Search Keyword Ads
Google Search keyword ads were targeted at Korean speaking users searching for English keywords, and all users searching for Korean keywords, related to: elections, propositions, property tax, college admissions and school districts.
Google Display Ads
The TV ad was shortened into an audio format and placed as a radio ad in Radio Korea and Radio Seoul during 10/22-11/3.
Radio Korea’s media kit claims that Radio Korea’s listenership base is 1 million listeners in Southern California, and places Radio Seoul’s listener base at 445,000. Radio Seoul’s media kit does not provide a Southern California figure of its listeners.
A slideshow-style display ad was placed in supermarket cashier TV displays at 17 Korean supermarkets in Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego during 10/17-10/26 through Xen Media. Xen Media claims that these sites combined generate 1 million visits during a typical 10-day period.