Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Sanders Is Surprise Leader in Ad Agency Spending

Presidential hopefuls are spending millions on TV ads, direct mail, digital ads, social media and data analytics. But the agency big spender may surprise you: Old Towne Media is the agency that has scored the most campaign cash--thanks to the Democrat's anti-establishment candidate Bernie Sanders. In fact, according to a mid-February analysis by Advertising Age magazine, the Sanders campaign has been more generous with agencies than his rivals, spending $10.6 million with Olde Towne Media, an agency focused on TV ads; $5.6 million with Revolution Messaging, a digital consulting and advertising agency; and $2.9 million with Tigereye Promotions for campaign paraphernalia and merchandising. Sanders' agency spending beat rival Hillary Clinton's outlay; her top three agency investments have been $8.7 million with TV-focused media agency GMMB, $1.8 million to Bully Pulpit Interactive for digital, and $1.05 million for direct marketing with Chapman Cubine Adams & Hussey. Bernie also whips GOP party outsider Ted Cruz's agency investment. Cruz sent $3.2 million to Cambridge Analytica, a data analytics and digital media firm; $2 million to Campaign Solutions, a digital agency; and $1.9 million to The Lukens Co., a direct marketing firm. Marco Rubio, the latest GOP establishment hope, has only one agency scoring over a million dollars: Smart Media Group, a media agency, scooped up $8.6 million from the Rubio campaign. However, the Ad Age story isn't including spending by PACs, target of Sanders' ire. Plus, GOP front-runner Donald Trump, who has coasted on "earned media" coverage and finally aired a TV ad in January, isn't included in the article. Still, looking at primary vote forecasts, it's a good bet many of these agencies will soon lose their political gravy train. For more on candidates' agency spending, read http://adage.com/article/campaign-trail/towne-media-topped-election-agency-spending-2015/302680/

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