Campaign Insider

Candidates struggling amid outside ad spending

Candidates struggling amid outside ad spending

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 29 2014

Candidates and their consultants need to up their advertising game in order to be effective in a media market saturated with spending by outside groups.

The recent Supreme Court ruling in the McCutcheon case was expected to tip the balance of spending power back in favor of candidates and national parties. But a new report from the Wesleyan Media Project shows that ad spending by outside groups is dwarfing candidate output.

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NGP VAN and Catalist partner for NEA's 'Activist Continuum'

by Sean J. Miller  / Apr 25 2014

Two Democratic consulting firms have joined forces to help the National Education Association rev up its members for 2014 and counter-deep pocketed opponents. 

NGP VAN and Catalist are working with the educators’ union on a program called “Activist Continuum.” Despite the sci-fi sounding name, the program has a simple goal: To help the NEA improve its two-way engagement with its membership and “push them up the ladder of activism.”

“After Citizens United

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New Hampshire again 'safe' for polling 

New Hampshire again 'safe' for polling 

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 25 2014

New Hampshire is “safe for polling” again after Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) signed a bill that lift’s the state’s restrictions on survey research.

Before Hassan signed SB 196 on Wednesday, the Granite State had an anti-push poll law on its books that the attorney general’s office was using to go after polling firms.

It fined Mountain West Research $20,000 in 2010 and OnMessage, Inc. $15,000 in 2012. Moreover, the state’s attorney general

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Getting the most out of yard signs

Getting the most out of yard signs

by Ben Donahower / Apr 14 2014

For yard signs to increase candidate name recognition, a campaign needs to ensure one thing: that voters see them. In many cases, that’s easier said than done.

There could be dozens of candidates’ signs competing for voters’ attention, less common issues like similar candidate names, and if a campaign is going to invest in signs, why not take creative steps to increase the campaigns signs’ exposure to more voters?

One of the

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Can addressability keep TV ahead of web?

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 11 2014

Addressability technology is what could ensure online doesn’t overtake television advertising as the preferred medium of campaigns, at least for now.  

That’s the argument made by some traditional media consultants who are facing increased competition for campaign budgets — and commissions — from their digital rivals. Addressable ads are currently available in roughly 42 million households through live TV and video-on-demand, according to Ad Age. These households, which may climb to 50 million

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'Culture' impeding GOP in campaign tech race

'Culture' impeding GOP in campaign tech race

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 10 2014

Republicans are lagging behind Democrats in the technology race because of “culture,” according to Ned Ryun, a GOP consultant.

Republicans have been ridiculed for their recent attempts to foster a start-up culture inside the national committee. Ryun, founder of Voter Gravity, sounded disappointed with the efforts. 

“Our biggest challenge is cultural change,” Ryun said Thursday at C&E’s CampaignTech East conference in Washington, D.C. “I think it’s more of a cultural shift

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Obama 'terrified' of being outspent in '12

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 09 2014

The Obama campaign was “terrified” that the Citizens United ruling would mean they would be outspent two-to-one on TV ads in 2012, according to Larry Grisolano, whose firm, AKPD Message and Media, led the president’s media effort last cycle.

The Obama camp was able to compensate for the deficit — which ended up being about $100 million in favor of Romney — by targeting voters it deemed persuadable, who in most cases

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McCutcheon could boost candidates, parties  

McCutcheon could boost candidates, parties  

by Sean J. Miller / Apr 02 2014

The Supreme Court’s McCutcheon v. FEC ruling has already been labeled a “disaster” and “scarier than Citizens United” by some reform groups. But for candidates and the national parties, who were marginalized four years ago by Citizens, it may be a boon.

The court’s decision to lift the aggregate contribution limits for individuals to candidates and national parties mean that major donors can now max out contributions of $32,400 to the

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Reed Awards to add Spanish-language categories for 2015

Reed Awards to add Spanish-language categories for 2015

by Shane D'Aprile / Apr 01 2014

The 2015 Reed Awards will expand its list of categories to highlight Spanish-language advertising produced and run by U.S. campaigns during the 2014 midterm cycle.

Given the growth in Spanish-language advertising, and the expected focus on Hispanic voters in several key 2014 battlegrounds, it only makes sense to expand our category offerings for 2015. For Campaigns & Elections, it's part of our effort to ensure the Reed Awards continue to reflect the best the campaign

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Why your treasury department matters 

Why your treasury department matters 

by Bradley T. Crate / Mar 31 2014

If you’ve announced your candidacy or are considering a run for office, chances are you’ve put together a platform and have evaluated your chances of winning -- but have you considered all of the financial and operational logistics awaiting your campaign?

This is where a good treasury department steps in to strategically manage your money and respond to incoming compliance concerns.

I’ve seen how campaigns often underestimate the amount of work involved

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Remembering Xavier Lopez-Ayala

Remembering Xavier Lopez-Ayala

by Evan Sutton / Mar 28 2014

Liberal activists this week learned of the death of Xavier Lopez-Ayala, a campaign veteran who passed away suddenly at 26.

On Tuesday night, a group of us stood four or five deep at the New Organizing Institute (NOI) in Washington, listening as friends recounted stories of their time with him.

“You all are the busiest people. We schedule our weekends two months in advance. But with a couple hours notice and a Facebook event

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Clear Channel unveils new interactive billboards 

Clear Channel unveils new interactive billboards 

by Sean J. Miller / Mar 26 2014

Clear Channel hopes a new interactive ad product will win over campaign media buyers who have long shunned billboards.

"There's a perception out there that we need to overcome," Whitney Tipton, Clear Channel Outdoor's advocacy liaison, tells C&E.  "And we're well on our way to doing that."

Tipton admits that in the past CCO's products have been ineffectively pitched to campaigns as an alternative to TV advertising, which media buyers dismissed.

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