Deborah D. McAdams /
TVB: Local Stations Took in 80 Percent of Political Spending on TV Ads
Obama outspent Romney on local spots
NEW YORK -- Local
stations took in more than 80 percent of the total spent on political TV ads,
the TVB said in a report released today. The organization, which promotes
broadcast TV in the advertising community, said local TV’s take went from $2.1
billion in 2010—a non-presidential election year—to $2.9 billion in 2012.
However, it said the 2010 figure was 35 percent more than for 2008, when Barack
Obama defeated Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in their bid for the White House.
presidential spending alone grew 65 percent from 2008 to 2012, with local
stations raking in $500 million.
one of the primary areas of change, the report said. In addition to MRI and
Scarborough, Rentrak provided voter-targeted TV viewing research on a
market-by-market basis, and by sub-market geographies for both broadcast and
cable channels. TVB said cable was purchased by the network while broadcast was
bought by program, daypart and genre. Local TV, the organization said, “had the
vast majority of target viewer rating points and ad inventory.”
Obama campaign tilted more toward placements in prime time while Romney
strategists favored ads near news programming, when the PAC and party committee
ads [were] factored into the equation, the daypart allocations were not
dramatically different between the two campaigns,” the report said.
TVB noted 2012
was the first presidential cycle where the PACs played a role. President
Obama’s campaign placed 88 percent of his broadcast spots. Priorities USA,Obama’s PAC, and the DNC placed 12 percent of
the broadcast spots. The Romney camp’s campaign accounted for less than 40
percent of the broadcast spots and Romney’s PAC accounted for another 12
percent. Other pro-Romney PACs—mostly Crossroads and the RNC—represented 50
percent, or half, of his broadcast media.
TVB’s report said that while Romney forces outspent the Obama team, the
latter bought about 10 percent more broadcast spots, much of it in the final 60
days prior to the election under qualification for lowest unit rate, “but much
of Romney’s did not.”
important advantages to the Obama campaign’s controlling the lion’s share of
the budget were ‘command and control,’” the report said. “With the nine
battleground states taking about 90 percent of the presidential spend the issue
to spend rather than where to spend. Obama’s team acted early and dominated with both
TV dollars and units from May through July. When Romney’s forces paused their
spending at the end of August around the conventions, the Obama camp turned up
the heat and never lost the ad unit lead again.”