lessons from America

The TV battleground

I haven’t yet written as much as I’d hoped about the progress and practical realisation of the 50 State strategy.  But seeing this table of recent TV ad spending by the campaigns, has inspired me to write a quick post. 

The headline figures – of McCain nearly doubling his TV ad spend to $9.3 million this past week, and Obama still outspending his opponent by an almost 2:1 margin – aren’t actually what I find interesting.  It is using the State by State breakdown to work out where the campaigns are going on offense and targeting.

There is significant expenditure in the major swing states (with the expensive media markets) you’d expect: Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.  And sure the less populated and cheaper swing states get their little slice of the pie too – the likes of New Hampshire, Iowa and New Mexico.

But the most noteworthy aspect is that Obama in particular is still trying to keep the battle up in a number of other states that wouldn’t normally get much attention.  North Carolina – yes North Carolina –  is one where he looks to be aggressive spending / targeting.  Indiana is another. There are small but significant ad buys in Montana and South Carolina (offense) and Maine (defense), all of which are places where McCain hasn’t spent a dime on TV advertising on in the past fortnight at the very least.  And West Virginia even gets a little look in, from both sides.  

While 19 is far from a full 50 State strategy, with a month to go til the election Obama is still trying to actively expand the electoral map, even with his TV advertising.  The resources pouring into the ground game I suspect are even more widely spread.

October 9, 2008 Posted by | 50 State strategy | , , | Leave a comment