Rather than Barack Obama or The New York Times’ data diviner Nate Silver, the real winners of election 2012 were micro-targeted advertising and messaging.
That’s according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, which now estimates that micro-targeted ads accounted for $130 million to $200 million in spending during last year's presidential election.
“Political micro-targeting in digital advertising truly matters. Most importantly, it can help make the difference between a winning race and a losing one in close elections,” according to Patrick Dolan, EVP and COO at the IAB.
Dolan credits micro-targeted political ads with playing crucial roles in the recent elections by providing scalable, custom messaging during the entire campaign cycle, as well as aiding recruitment, fund-raising and get-out-the-vote efforts.
Plus, micro-targeted ads were increasingly part
of a holistic, comprehensive campaign outreach strategy, where online spend was conjoined with tailored cable and broadcast buys in an aligned effort.
Looking ahead, the IAB expects a “tweaking” of targeted ads by monitoring voter reaction in a refined political engagement process. Also, retail politicking -- such as “door-to-door” campaigning -- will be executed more in tandem with micro-targeted messages and tactics, Dolan predicts.
Privacy issues will continue to be considered and addressed by micro-targeting firms in campaigns at all levels, Mike Zaneis, SVP of Public Policy and General Counsel at the IAB, warns. “The research conducted and findings identified ... have shed new light on the opportunities presented by micro-targeting, which should catch the attention of aspiring and current lawmakers alike,” says Zaneis.