Political Programmatic

The midterm elections are rapidly approaching, naturally giving rise to chatter -- and pitches, at least for reporters -- about political advertising. And the buildup to the 2014 midterms has brought with it more application of programmatic ad tech to political campaigns.

Earlier this morning, DSPolitical announced the launch of, a self-serve digital ad platform that lets political advertisers target local voters. As its name suggests, the new platform is geared for local Democratic candidates.

Given the fact audience-targeting tech is being used by both Democrats and Republicans at both the local and national levels, I think it’s time the trend is given a name. How about “Political Programmatic”?

Oh, and we totally call dibs on “coining” the term “Political Programmatic.”

Actually, programmatic tech has been used in political campaigns before. An RTB Insider piece from December 2012 called for the 2012 election to be dubbed the “Big Data Election” because of the role digital advertising (and programmatic ad tech) played. That piece noted how the Obama campaign used RTB and “real-time learning,” which presumably helped win voters, particularly in the swing states. The RTB Insider piece added that “the Romney campaign could have taken greater advantage of real-time learning and RTB implementations.”

But while programmatic has played its part in previous elections, chiefly in 2012, the tech has come a long way since then, and so have expectations. One would expect a presidential candidate to be using the best of the best tech to help them win campaigns, and now in 2014 similar opportunities are possible for local candidates. Heck, Real-Time Daily didn’t even exist during the 2012 election.

Here’s to the “Premium Political Programmatic” ad platform we’ll undoubtedly see in 2016…

"American flag" photo from Shutterstock.
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