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EEO. 2021; 20(6): 772-785

Political Advertising in Pakistan: Comparative Analysis of General Elections 2013 and 2018

Dr. Saqib Riaz, Sajid Nawaz Abbasi, Dr. Babar Hussain Shah.

The present study analyzed the content of political advertisements in the leading English and Urdu newspapers by the three largest political parties of Pakistan; Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)- one month before the general elections of 2013 and 2018. The newspapers were selected representing the four major newspapers publication groups. Two leading English newspapers Dawn, The News and two leading Urdu newspapers Daily Express, Daily Nawa-i-Waqt were chosen. It was revealed that the three political parties employed various advertising appeals, themes and the opponent attack strategy in their political advertisements to garner the support of the voters during the elections. It was found out that Pakistan People’s Party surpassed its main competitors PTI and PML-N in publishing more advertisements. It was found that PPP used the content of its past performance together with themes such as roti (bread), kapra (clothes) and makan (home) in its political advertisements. Whereas PML-N used fear appeal, past performance, sanctity of vote in addition to some other mixed themes. PTI besides employing the opponent attack used its past performance, health, education, corruption and hope appeal in its advertisements.

Key words: Content Analysis, Political Advertisements, General Elections 2013 and 2018, Newspapers

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