How to target your audience like a politician

The political campaign season is in full swing and this year we’ll see politicians make ample use of Facebook, Twitter, blogs, display ads and SMS texts to drum up support. Unlike with traditional mass media vehicles, communicating key issues to a diverse constituent base via digital media requires more customization than ever before. With the proliferation of consumer data and data management platforms, there are plenty of tools to help advertisers customize ads just like political campaigns do.

Here are three tips on what you can do as an advertiser to effectively connect to your audience

  1. 360-degree immersion
    With so many gadgets vying for the average American’s attention, it’s no small feat to actually grab it! To ensure your message doesn’t get lost in the deluge, use multi-channel audience targeting to communicate the same message on multiple platforms. Data-driven advertising that helps you understand as much as possible about your targets, enables you to consistently reach your audience regardless of channel, giving you a greater chance of being remembered when it matters.Look for partner companies that directly manage display, email, direct mail and social media platforms so that once you define your target audience, you can rest assured that the same customized message will be delivered across all channels reliably.
  2. Find your right target
    Many political advertisers have a list of key segments they’d like to reach. Reputable data providers can help you connect with the right segments in a de-identified manner using targeted digital messaging. For example, political campaigns can display environmental-oriented ads to a subset list while showing a Social Security themed message to another subset from their voter database. This allows them to customize their messaging to cater to the varied interests of their constituents The same ideas can be applied in targeting your key audience.
  3. Get granular
    Campaigners always know which types of voters are engaged and passionate about their cause, and connect with the most influential voters based on their political affiliation and interests. To do this with your audience, look into data management platforms that have a reputable history of gathering first-party data. They need to seamlessly combine their analytical know-how when creating sophisticated segments in a privacy-compliant manner. We call this data-driven political advertising.

Here’s an example of how we helped a government official in a local re-election campaign: Using Experian Marketing Services data, the official ran segmented TV ads in his local election area. The TV ad was tailored so that multiple ads with different messages were delivered to each of his demographic segments. The result of the targeted messaging led to strong re-election numbers and an eventual campaign win for the official.