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The Freedom Club State PAC sought ExactDrive to include an online presence in their overall plan to retake the majority in the Minnesota House of Representatives. The PAC raised and spent nearly $1 million in independent expenditures on 24 targeted house races. Traditional media such as TV and direct mail were already a part of the overall plan; however, online ads were a new consideration. This technology was thought to be a promising strategy to aid in retaking the majority in which Republicans needed a net a gain of 21 seats.
The ExactDrive team worked closely with the Freedom Club State PAC to identify the target audiences in all 24 districts. Based on polling and past election performance, the team developed an overall digital media plan that delivered over 15 million impressions throughout the 24 targeted districts.
By serving over 15 million impressions to the targeted audience and with a coordinated message to the traditional media, the PAC won 21 of the 24 seats they participated in, enough to retake the majority in the House of Representatives. Exact Drive used real-time media buying, audience segments and targeting technologies to maximize the return on investment.
Behind TV, web ads have greatest impact on voters.
Immediately following the 2010 elections, several groups took part in post-election polling to determine the rationale behind a voter’s decision. Traditional media like TV, direct mail, radio, phone calls, billboards and signs were key elements to the overall campaign strategy for both Republicans and Democrats. For the first time, Minnesota voters were targeted in a comprehensive manner by online ads.
The post-election poll, conducted by well-respected Washington, DC polling firm The Tarrance Group, found that Internet ads were the second most influential source of paid media. When asked: “In the 2010 election, which type of communication had the greatest impact on your vote?” 29% responded TV ads followed by 5% who said Internet ads. When asked which type of media voters recalled in the final two weeks of the election, 43% chose Internet ads, followed by phone calls at 38%, billboards/signs at 30%, radio at 29%, direct mail at 28% and TV ads at 27%.
With the millions of dollars campaigns are spending on traditional media, an investment in online advertising can provide the winning advantage.