by Kathy Groob, Publisher ElectWomen Magazine
In today’s world of 24-hour news and hundreds of channels, television in some ways is bigger than ever. Just like in grassroots voter targeting, political campaign advertising should include the same precise micro targeting strategy that is used in field operations as well as direct mail and phone calls.
Doug Heyl of Scout Communications is a political media adviser who develops campaign media strategies, develops and creates commercials and directs the purchase of television and radio airtime. He has worked with many women candidates, both with small and large budgets. “Every campaign should determine who are their targets and then what is the best way to reach them with the resources they have. Sometimes that means all broadcast TV, sometimes that means direct mail and some targeted cable, but most campaigns it means a good combination of both,” said Heyl.
1. Start as early as you can. Begin early to plan the message campaign. Bring all parties together – pollster, researchers and communications, as well as direct mail and electronic media consultants together to plan the campaign strategy.
2. Develop good creative. Don’t skimp on good photography and production. A picture is worth a thousand words and the same goes for quality production and sound. A minimum budget for a good television commercial production can range from $5,000 to $30,000. Every campaign should not be surprised by production costs ask questions and make your media consultant go through a production budget before you start shooting. Any production budget should also include video products for the web as well as for broadcast.
3. Media advisors should pay multiple roles. Today’s good media advisors should also be an integral part of your campaign strategy team. They can advise the candidate on a number of ways to communicate with the targeted voters.
4. How much to spend on television advertising? Even in large media markets the cost per impression of voters is cheapest through TV but in larger markets the expense may be too great for some campaigns. Some good rules to follow. If you can’t afford at least 1,800 GRP”s broadcast TV probably should not be your principal form of communication but if the campaign can afford a long cable TV campaign spot buying broadcast TV can supplement a cable buy.
5. It’s not broadcast or cable anymore you need to buy programming. With the greater options for viewers it is important to have targeting to tell you who you want to talk to and then design a buy that reaches the demographic you want to reach. This means a healthy mix of broadcast and cable. Make sure your media buyer can give you data on where your targets are if they can’t get a new media buyer.
To contact Doug Heyl, visit: http://www.scoutcommunications.net/