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TV Still Number One for Political Campaign Ad Spending

We all know that media, specifically broadcast television, has long been an important tool used in political campaigns. In fact, for at least 50 years, political campaign management teams have planned almost their entire budget around TV ads.

However, over the last decade, the U.S. political scene has witnessed dramatic changes in how media is used. There are many factors working against TV advertising, including increased time spent on mobile devices, an ever more fragmented viewership and DVR capabilities that allow people to record or stream shows and skip the ads.

As a result, many campaigns are increasingly adopting digital and social platforms, targeting constituents in a more tailored, customized and affordable manner.

While some campaigns are indeed embracing all that digital advertising has to offer, many political machines still heavily rely on the tried-and-true method of reaching voters on TV. It’s here that they can almost always target a reliable audience: older voters.

According to a recent study by Nielsen, the TV-ratings firm. Americans spend far more time watching TV than being online. And adults watch about 36 hours of TV per week, compared with 16 hours spent on smartphones, tablets and computers, states the study.

Even as digital capabilities evolve and improve, smart political campaign management teams realize that television ads are still the best way to reach large numbers of people if your campaign has the financial resources to do so.  The key is, however, understanding that as their audience’s viewing habits change, they must diversify the ways in which they deliver their campaign messages.

At Lincoln Strategy Group, we work with our political campaign management clients to develop messaging that ultimately helps them win.

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