The final count is in, and ad spending for the U.S. 2022 elections came in 7.5% lower than originally forecast, according to final estimates from competitive ad intelligence firm AdImpact.
Total ad spending by candidates and other advertisers across all national, state and local elections came in at $8.94 billion -- 7.5% less than the $9.67 billion that AdImpact originally forecast in August 2022.
With the exception of so-called downballot campaigns in local markets, for all other categories -- House, Governor and Senate -- races came in below expectations.
"We have spent the last several months analyzing what occurred to draw conclusions that can inform future projections and increase our understanding," AdImpact acknowledges in its new report, adding: "While perfect projections are unattainable, we believe that through careful analysis of the data we can guide future iterations to be more accurate."
The biggest media beneficiaries of the revised estimates are radio and cable TV, while broadcast, CTV and digital were all taken down in total volume and share of spending.