It’s been a record-setting election season in several ways, as giant numbers of citizens flock to early voting, but political ad spending has already surpassed a record $6.7B, and there’s still 17 days to go.
Political advertising is a largely local business, and so the vast bulk of that spending has gone to local stations and local cable: $4.1B to local broadcast, and $1B to local cable, Advertising Analytics says, with just $247M on national broadcast/cable networks.
Spending on the presidential race has more than doubled from 2016, to $2.63B vs. a previous $855M.
Meanwhile, Senate race spending has jumped to $1.67B from $989M, and spending the House races has actually declined so far – to $950M from $1.03B.
Of that total political ad spend, digital has about an 18% share ($1.2B) and 73% of that spending is direct-response ads for fund-raising and list-building, vs. 23% of spending on persuasive ads.