Keeping Brands Visible in an Election Year

During high-profile elections, how can brands make their ads stand out, despite the competition of non-stop political promotions? EGC has answers.

An election year like no other, and brands must prepare

As brands and marketers plan their strategies for 2024, they should be mindful of the fact that this is an election year. And it is going to be a huge election year. If your brand has ads that appear in print, on television, online—or anywhere—prepare to make adjustments in purchasing media and scheduling. By doing so, your brand will stay apart and above the many political spots that are already appearing like clockwork.

Media demand is high—with even higher spend

There will be a very high demand for media inventory in all markets. The upcoming year is predicted to be the most expensive—for Primary and General elections—across the U.S., as both forums are spending more money than has ever been witnessed in the media market. How expensive? Consider this contrast: An article in Media Post noted that political advertising in 2020 reached a record high of $6.7 billion. This year only promises to outdistance that sum, as NBC News reports that this figure will reach $10 billion, setting an all-time record.

Brands can’t fight city hall

We can’t get around it: Political ads take precedence during an election year—thanks mostly to the exorbitant sums of money that candidates are willing to spend on everything from air time to media placement. This means that non-political advertisers should more than likely expect scheduling and preemption issues when it comes to promoting the goods and services of their own brands. What can they do to be seen? It all comes down to planning and timing.

Planning

Brands who partner with a media agency have the edge of receiving guidance and advice in effectively getting their message out there, even during an election year. The media agency will help these brands plan ahead, which allows for the negotiation of specific ad placements and scheduling agreements with media outlets to minimize disruptions to their specific campaigns.

Timing

On another note, non-political advertisers should consider the timing of their messages in relation to the election cycle. They should show discretion by avoiding sensitive or polarizing topics that could get lost in the political noise or unintentionally alienate potential customers. (Remember: Word of mouth travels fast, and an otherwise positive brand presence could be hurt by a stream of negative reviews. And over politics? Not worth it.)

Other factors to consider: Types of markets and specific locations

Lastly, all markets are different. Primary elections occur at different times in different states and will without question impact available inventory and rates. Remember, this is not the typical September through November time period. As the countdown to Election Day draws nearer, brands need to be more than usually attentive to available space and time. Advertisers who have an active presence on television should especially begin these conversations about this with their clients now.

The EGC Group is a full-service integrated and marketing agency with expertise in media buying, planning, and placement. Contact us to find out how your brand may be seen and remembered during even the most challenging times (like an election year).