Political campaigns are increasingly turning to programmatic advertising to build awareness and drive voters to the polls. With the latest technology in addressable OTT/CTV solutions, political advertisers can achieve the impact of traditional advertising with the precision of digital. When gearing up for the 2020 elections, a political media firm in Washington, D.C. partnered with Simpli.fi to take advantage of unique household-level targeting capabilities. With a focus on state and local elections, they knew that precise targeting would be key to garnering votes.
The political firm represented 168 candidates in 23 states, including races for State Senate and House of Representatives, county wide officials, city council, district attorneys, and school board members. In order to scale a large number of campaigns at the local level, they turned to Simpli.fi’s innovative addressable programmatic solutions. The firm’s expertise at campaign messaging and content creation combined with Simpli.fi’s advanced audience targeting capabilities meant that the right message would be delivered to the right person at the right time for a large number of campaigns. Simpli.fi’s unique OTT/CTV advertising solution enabled them to serve engaging video ads to streaming devices of all sizes. Additionally, the political media firm served display and pre-roll video ads on small-screen devices.
Targeting Millions of Local Voters at the Household-Level
Ultimately, the goal of each individual advertising campaign was to encourage voters to cast a ballot for the respective candidate on election day. With a focus on using engaging video ads to build awareness among voters, the firm relied heavily on Simpli.fi’s OTT/CTV solution. After developing a comprehensive marketing strategy for each candidate, the political media firm leveraged Simpli.fi’s technology to execute dozens of custom advertising campaigns aligning with each election cycle.
Simpli.fi achieved an average address match rate of greater than 90%, far superior to IP-based solutions, and additionally had no minimum list size requirements.
First, the firm leveraged Simpli.fi’s Addressable Geo-Fencing solution to target at the household-level. The political campaigns provided address lists from voter registration rolls for the firm to upload to the Simpli.fi platform, ranging from 2,000 to 50,000 addresses for each candidate. Simpli.fi achieved an average address match rate of greater than 90%, far superior to IP-based solutions, and additionally had no minimum list size requirements.
If they did not have access to voter registration data, the advertiser had the ability to build their own audience with Simpli.fi’s Addressable Audience Curation tool. This gives marketers the ability to custom-curate household-level audiences based on location data and over 700 demographic variables including party affiliation, political donations, household income, presence of a registered voter and much more.
With the audience in place, Simpli.fi’s Addressable Geo-Fencing solution used GPS data paired with plat lines to match each address to the exact physical location, shape, and size of the property. The system then automatically built a target fence around each property for targeting the individual households.
Simpli.fi’s cross-device matching helped to serve ads across all devices within a home, including large-screen connected TVs. While most political campaigns focused on OTT/CTV advertising, Simpli.fi also served display and video ads on desktop, mobile, and tablet.
Success in Political Marketing
Overall, the political media firm has been thrilled with the results based on Simpli.fi’s ability to drive performance at scale. In total, there were more than 5.4 million addresses uploaded and matched in the Simpli.fi platform across all advertising campaigns. Simpli.fi executed more than 700 different campaigns on behalf of 168 individual candidates, with 550 of these launching in the final two months of the election cycle. Furthermore, the political media firm produced a winning campaign for more than half of their 168 political candidates, including flipping House of Representative seats in multiple states. While the election results mattered more to the candidates than any advertising metric, Simpli.fi’s reporting offers valuable and transparent insights. Political advertisers can track both online and offline conversions, including for OTT/ CTV campaigns, with reporting granularity down to the ZIP+4 level. For example, by placing Conversion Zones around local polling stations, political advertisers can measure the number of users who were served an ad and then visited a voting location. Simpli.fi also tracks and reports on online conversions such as signups or donations.
Key Success Factors
- Targeting at the household-level to reach potential voters and minimize wasted impressions.
- A robust and user-friendly self-serve platform, including the ability to easily upload proprietary address lists of registered voters.
- The ability to match and activate campaigns in minutes, with no minimum list size, and an average address match rate exceeding 90%.
- In-depth reporting and visual dash- boards to showcase KPIs to each candidate’s campaign staff.
- Utilized video ads served on OTT/CTV devices to offer the impact of linear TV with the precision of digital, in addition to pre-roll video and display ads.
- Simpli.fi’s world class customer service and training.
- Ability to scale and manage dozens of localized campaigns simultane- ously across 23 states with varying flight dates.