Britain’s two newly founded political parties have outspent their Westminster rivals two to one on Facebook advertising in the weeks leading up to the European elections.
Labour, the Conservatives and the Lib Dems spent just over £13,500 between them. The vast majority of this, £7,968, came from the Lib Dems.
The two new parties have become the top two spenders on political advertising on Facebook in recent weeks.
They spent more in recent weeks than pro-Brexit group Best for Britain or the campaign group for a second referendum, People’s Vote, which have each spent more than £425,000 since Facebook launched a database of political adverts last year in response to complaints over its elections influence.
Change UK, also known as The Independent Group, has already received donations from former Labour backers including Sir David Garrard, the property tycoon, and Lord Myners, the former Marks & Spencer chairman. The party says it has received more than £15,000 in donations.
The advertising drive is likely an effort to increase the party’s digital reach on social media. The Independent Group has a mere 20,000 “likes” on Facebook, the Brexit Party has more, but still just 85,000, significantly less than Labour or the Conservatives.
The Brexit Party has, so far, had the greater return on its adverts, which have been viewed up to 4.5 million times, according to an analysis of Facebook data by The Sunday Telegraph. Change UK, meanwhile, has had its adverts viewed by up to 2 million users.