Frankly it [election mode] will affect virtually every kind of media because there’s going to be a lot of money spent by politicians in their quest to be elected and it’s also going to create a lot of clutter everywhere. In finite media like newspaper space, magazine space, radio time and television time, election campaigns push the rates up. Even media buyers won’t be able to get the deals they’re used to. And in a media that is not finite such as direct mail, it adds to the clutter at the Exchange and in your mail box. Delivery of your all important mailing piece will take longer and you’ll need to allow for this.
During the last election, every spending record ever set was broken. This time will be no exception; every one of those records is going to be broken at every level. So there’s going to be a lot of ‘stuff’ out there. In such an environment, the need to stand out and be noticed cannot be underestimated, regardless of media type. You’ll be part of a big “pile”.
There is an opportunity here if you can tie in to newsworthy events and certainly an election is one, but there are many others as well.
It’s the Robert Collier principle of ‘enter the conversation that’s already in their mind’. What are people talking about on coffee breaks, what are people talking about over a drink at the end of the day, what are they talking about over dinner? One of the major topics during an election period is going to be the election itself. In a positive sense, I think every marketer should in fact give serious thought to how they can tie into this, how they can link to this, how they can capitalise on it?
During the recent well publicised Californian elections, which Schwarzenegger won, I think it was Taco Bell that assigned food items to different candidates, then taking it one step further, when someone bought a particular item of food, it was deemed as a vote for the respective candidate. What a great way to use an election to drive sales.
To summarise: Almost without exception, any business owner who advertises in any medium, will find it costs considerably more and the clutter will mean the need to make an effort to stand out is of paramount importance; particularly as the pace picks up closer to the election.
Marketers must keep this in mind.