Your 3-Step Plan to Reach Last-Minute Voters

October 18, 2016

The general election is just 20 days away, which means political advertisers have less than three weeks to light a fire under undecided voters. Here are my quick tips to shift voter holdouts to voter turnouts on Election Day.

Step 1: A Dash of Data
My three-step plan to successfully reach voters right now begins with data. With so many data providers available through Data Management Platforms, it can be difficult to find the one that meets your immediate needs. To cut through the clutter, look for data that is proprietary to your publisher or ad tech advertising partner. These unique segments are more precise, and thus more valuable, allowing you to better target your audience.

Think about data like the spices that add flavor to a meal — if you’re too heavy-handed with data, you can ruin the whole thing. Throwing too many data segments into your campaign can hurt your overall goal and muddy the message you’re trying to send voters. So, when you’re working within a constrained geographic area, you’re often better off editing yourself like a chef: “When in doubt, leave it out.” Look to exclusionary targeting and discard those that don’t need to be reached with your message. This will leave you with the most robust audience to target against, while leaving room to optimize to those viewers engaging with the message.

Step 2: Keep It Simple and Satisfying
Voters seeking political information want immediate gratification. You run the risk of losing voters’ attention if your campaign can’t make a meaningful connection with them right away. If your campaign website loads slowly on a smartphone, for example, you can bet that voters will look elsewhere to learn what they need to know about candidates.

Make the brave decision to let your political advertising partners and clients know that this crazy election cycle demands short, concise messages. A five- or even 10-second pre-roll spot that nails your messaging could be exactly the right way to cut through the clutter.

Step 3: Mobile Everywhere, Especially at Home
Our research shows that U.S. audiences spend more than three hours a day on their mobile devices, with 87% of that time spent with apps. But don’t mistake “mobile” as meaning these people are necessarily out on the town. We’ve discovered that 60% of all mobile moments are actually happening while people are at home.1 So while you’re spending budget on TV spots to target voters where they live, they’re actually distracted by what’s on their smartphones. Which means, you need to not only wrap your campaign in mobile to get the commuter or person on the go, you really need mobile for just about everyone.

The 2016 election is unprecedented in many ways, and political advertisers need to be creative to reach people in a crowded media climate. This 3-step plan can help them squeeze as much out of the home stretch as they can.

To build your plan to reach last-minute voters now, contact a AOL sales representative for more information.


1 Source: AOL, Mobile Video US Research, 2015