September 14th, 2012
Besides the Big Questions for 2012 we talked about yesterday, the current Campaigns & Elections TechBytes column also looks at some targeting options beyond those involving digital cookies and voter databases. Another useful channel? Cable TV ads, which usually cost less per voter contact than broadcast, particularly if you’re also using the natural segmentation of cable audiences (think: Military Channel vs. Lifetime) to reach particular demographic slices with the right messaging.
The column points out a particular advantage of cable for SuperPACs and other “independent” groups — unlike candidates’ campaigns, which pay a discounted rate to advertising on the evening news and other broadcast outlets, IE campaigns must buy TV ads at market rates, which can be ridiculously high in saturated and inventory-short battleground states. Switching money from broadcast to cable helps IEs save money and boost ROI through good targeting.
Besides cable, TechBytes also examines internet radio, using as an example the Romney Pandora ad campaign we discussed here a few weeks back. More to come? You better believe it: our targeting options keep proliferating, perhaps faster than the political consultanting class’s ability to keep up with them.