Trump, Johnson Dominate Radio Advertising

A Media Matters analysis of political radio advertising over the past weeks shows that Republicans and Independents are much more likely to be targeted on radio, as Donald Trump and Gary Johnson far outpace a nonexistent Clinton presence.

Between July 27 and August 8 of this year, the pro-Donald Trump super PACS, USA Business Freedom PAC and Liberty Action Group PAC together aired 100 ads on radio in 85 major markets, as reported by Media Matters. These were all pro-Trump ads.

An anti-Clinton super PAC, Great America PAC, had an even stronger presence on radio, releasing 239 spots over the same period.

During a time when Donald Trump's advertising is noticeably absent from TV, it is telling that the campaign is focusing its energy on radio.

Over a more recent time period, August 5 through August 14, the Liberty Action Group PAC and the USA Business Freedom PAC aired a combined total of 286 radio ads, promoting a pro-Trump message.



Clinton was still uninterested in the platform, spending heavily on TV ads. Conversely, Gary Johnson for President released 154 radio ads in this time period.

The Libertarian candidate assumes he will have more sway trying to convince conservative voters to switch to his side as those voters heavily rely on radio and radio talk shows for the their political news.

Again, during the 10 days between August 5 and August 14, the Great America PAC released 201 anti-Clinton ads.

Independent or swing voters do, however, have a particular affinity toward radio. Trump appears to be shoring up his base at a time when Republican defections are a seemingly constant occurrence.

Libertarian Johnson is making a different calculus. He is trying to peel away voters from Donald Trump by investing heavily in radio. Radio is more economical than TV, while still offering significant reach.

4 comments about "Trump, Johnson Dominate Radio Advertising".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics, August 16, 2016 at 10:39 a.m.

    The number of ads used without an accompanying ad spending estimate is rather misleading. It may simply be a question of using radio --as it is cheaper than TV-----because the pro-Trump folks don't have the means to use TV---at this point, at least.

  2. Rick Thomas from MediaRich Marketing, August 16, 2016 at 2:23 p.m.

    I'm with Ed on this one.  But let me add this is a bit confusing as well.  At least from a numbers standpoint.  Is that 100 ads each in 85 markets for a total of 850 spots?   That's not clear but I would assume that the total would be the 850?  And then what were the formats that were bought in each market? I mean who was the target listener?  Quite frankly even 100 ads in each of 85 markets is a small buy unless it was all on one radio station. 

  3. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, August 16, 2016 at 3:09 p.m.

    Was that one ad in 201 markets ? Ill defined.

  4. Philip Rosenstein from Law360 replied, August 16, 2016 at 3:28 p.m.

    Thanks for the comments, Ed, Rick - surely data on spend would add more context to the number of spots each group ran. Comparing the number of spots across the 85 major markets covered is meant to give an overview of how varied the approaches to radio are across presidential candidates. When dollar values are available for the time period, we'll be sure to cover. 

    To your question, Rick - it's across the 85 markets, and just over a period of 10 days. 

Next story loading loading..