Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Political Marketers Divided on TV vs. Digital Spending

One of the hot debates among political marketers has nothing to do with policy or candidate; it's about budgeting between traditional TV campaigning and digital media. A younger tech-savvy generation is urging a boost in e-mail, online ads and mobile messaging, while seasoned campaigners counter that TV advertising still draws the biggest single share of viewers, justifying its lion's share of spending. Recent data bolsters the digital fans to some extent: A new poll -- sponsored by Google, the Republican digital firm Targeted Victory and the Democratic agency Well & Lighthouse -- found that just 48% of those survey said live television was their primary source for video content (down from 56% in 2012). TV ads are losing ground to "new technologies," the poll found, with 41% of respondents regularly or occasionally using a tablet or smartphone while watching TV, and TV viewers reporting increased viewing of prerecorded programs that allow them to skip past ads. "That means, for political campaigns, reaching younger, more diverse swing voters through live TV advertising alone is problematic," concluded the pollsters in a report by The Wall Street Journal Capital Bureau. But amping up e-mail and mobile communications introduces new problems: Focus groups conducted by the same pollsters found participants were more likely to see campaign e-mails and mobile ads as invasions of personal space, while TV and online ads were seen as less intrusive. For the complete news story, see http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2014/03/20/should-campaigns-spend-less-on-tv-ads/

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