Welcome to First Things First, nitronet’s daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on nitronet.com each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.
President Donald Trump declared victory overnight, which social media platforms and news outlets immediately flagged as problematic as millions of mail-in votes have yet to be counted in key toss-up states. As of this morning, five key states—Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin—have yet to report enough votes for their races to be called, and they will ultimately decide the election. Trump’s tweet that claims without evidence that Democrats are trying to “steal the election” received a warning from Twitter “for making a potentially misleading claim about an election.” On a similar post from Trump, Facebook added context that mail-in ballots still needed to be counted.
Read more: How the platforms are handling Trump’s claims.
Related: TV newscasters decried Trump’s false claim that he had won the election. Fox News’ Chris Wallace said, “This is an extremely flammable situation. The president just threw a match into it. He hasn’t won these states.” See more reaction here.
Throughout the evening, TVNewser senior editor A.J. Katz tracked network TV news coverage of the election results, noting developments in real time. Here are just a few highlights and takeaways:
- “Florida, Florida, Florida,” said CNN’s John King. The battleground state Florida was the hottest topic early in the evening.
- From 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET, Fox News was by far the most aggressive news outlet in projecting winners.
- All networks had virtual graphics, including CBS News, which has historically remained more low key but brought in former CNN production executive David Bohrman for this year’s coverage.
- Calm, the meditation app, sponsored CNN’s election coverage. The marketing move caught the eye of many Twitter users who noted its cleverness.
Check out the three-part live blog: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
Related: Election night has been called Fox News channel’s “Super Bowl.” Coverage of the race is a cash cow for Fox Corp., which saw quarterly earnings rise above pre-Covid levels with just under $100 million in revenue from political advertising alone.
By carving out a dedicated space for politics, publishers such as Axios, Politico and The Guardian have built up their identities as credible and recognizable news sources. This coverage has included traditional journalism along with podcasts, newsletters and more, satisfying business goals like new ad opportunities and mitigating the spread of misinformation.
One-stop shops: Learn how five publishers developed their politics-focused platforms.
Portland Trail Blazers star CJ McCollum was known for his zealous reporting instincts while earning his journalism degree at Lehigh University. Now, he’s bringing those skills to his new show ReMaking America on PlayersTV. For the first episode, he was joined by fellow NBA stars Tobias Harris of the Philadelphia 76ers and Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz, plus guest Kamala Harris, who all discussed voting, police brutality and investing in underserved communities.
Getting to the root of things: McCollum has a message for Middle America, where he grew up.