2020 ElectionsReleases

Ad Volumes in Congressional Races Smash Records

Senate Ads Up 170 Percent; House Ads Up 104 Percent   (MIDDLETOWN, CT) August 13, 2020 – The year 2020 is shaping up to be a banner year for television advertising with huge increases in volume and (to a lesser extent) spending in U.S. House and U.S. Senate races. Since January 1, 2019, over 275,000 ads have aired in markets across the country for U.S. House races, which represents a 104 percent increase over the comparable period in the 2015-2016 election cycle and a 73 percent increase over the 2011-2012 cycle (Table 1). Spending on House advertising is up by…
Wesleyan Media Project
August 13, 2020
2020 ElectionsReleases

Trump Focuses on Crime While Biden Talks COVID, Business, Economy

Presidential Ad War Tightens as Biden Closes the Gap on TV; Trump Continues to Dominate Digital   (MIDDLETOWN, CT) August 12, 2020 – A new analysis from the Wesleyan Media Project, in partnership with the Center for Responsive Politics, shows a presidential race that is fairly balanced when it comes to the ad war on television in the period leading up to Biden announcing his pick for vice president. Since July 14, Joe Biden’s campaign, along with pro-Biden advertisers, has aired about 54,000 ads compared to 63,000 ads for Donald Trump and his group allies (Table 1). But the amount…
Wesleyan Media Project
August 12, 2020
Blog

Why Is Digital Advertising So Hard to Track?

(MIDDLETOWN, CT) August 7, 2020 – Since 2010, the Wesleyan Media Project (WMP) has tracked political advertising on television, but the project only started providing data on digital advertising in 2018—and those numbers carry with them several caveats.  Why is it so hard to track digital advertising?1. The major social media platforms libraries don’t cover all digital advertising. While Facebook (including Instagram) and Google (including YouTube) have provided data on ads since May 2018, most vendors that place advertising on third-party sites do not provide any public information on their political ad sales (Google Ad Networks is the exception). Further,…
2020 ElectionsReleases

Trump Spends Big on TV Ads While Biden Holds Back

Senate Ads Spike; Eight Races See 10,000 Spots since May   (MIDDLETOWN, CT) July 2, 2020 – A new analysis from the Wesleyan Media Project, in partnership with the Center for Responsive Politics, shows that Donald Trump has ramped up his TV ad spending. Through the entire cycle to-date, President Trump has aired just over 55,000 ads on television (on broadcast, national cable and national network stations) at an estimated cost of $52 million. Table 1 shows that 50,000 of those Trump spots have aired since May 11, a time period during which Biden aired only 3,103 ads at a…