Majority Of Aussies Haven’t Seen A Single Online Election Ad: TubeMogul Study

Man working at office desk, looking at computer and scratching head

We’re deciding a new Prime Minister in a week and a half, but programmatic company TubeMogul has claimed 85 per cent of Aussies haven’t seen a single online ad related to the federal election. And of the 15 per cent that saw one, a third didn’t relate to the messages portrayed.

The company surveyed 10,000 Aussies of legal voting age Monday and Tuesday this week and the lack of presence online, or the lack of relevance, is a missed opportunity, said TubeMogul’s Matthew Dybwad, head of political and public affairs, based in Washington D.C.

“Too often, campaign media buyers run back to the notion of 1,000 gross rating points on TV as the only metric that moves the needle,” he said. “They don’t always fully understand the power of digital to change the narrative.”

Still, one digital place getting some action is gay dating app Grindr, of which The Greens said they would be targeting with an influx of ads. But it has led to some questioning where all the bizarre political ads have gone this time around.

Dybwad references the strength of online campaign for Bernie Sanders’ – politician for the Democratic Party who was recently beaten out by Hillary Clinton for preferred candidate. The New York Times reported Sanders had millions of fans online and gained supporters through a number of online channels such as Facebook and Reddit.

“Sanders used powerful video creative to carry his populist message to channels where Millennials get their content: online, mobile, social and connected devices,” said TubeMogul’s Dybwad.

“He found a successful formula very early for digital fundraising. Converting target audiences into activists and donors with digital advertising is often far more attractive because startup costs are lower and it’s far easier to scale quickly.”

However, he said the Labor Government here has many younger voters who are more likely to use a multitude of screens, so a lack of online ads means the party is missing out. In 2015 a report from ABC’s The Drum showed students were more likely to vote for Labor or The Greens, and that jobs had no telling now as to who voters would side with.

“Labor consistently secures higher support among younger generations,” said Dybwad. “The lower the age, the more likely they are to live in a multi-screen world, that doesn’t rely on traditional media sources for information and opinion. Relatively little online video exposure could therefore mean that the voters who would choose Labor are being missed because they aren’t seeing the ads.”

In this election cycle – including the US campaign – Belinda Aucott from content management agency Edge argued marketing automation should be one of the key drivers in election campaigns.

And given ad spend has spiked throughout Australia during election season, TubeMogul says it’s imperative the campaigns come online.

“Without investment in digital, political strategists risk their messaging and ads not getting seen and resonating,” said Sam Smith, TubeMogul’s Australia and New Zealand manager.

“If political advertisers decide to invest online, they need to ensure that viewability is measured and that they are confident in the reporting.

“Real transparency is critical so that strategists know they are targeting the right people in their voter file, and that they have a high degree of confidence that the ads are being seen in the right context at the right time.”

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