Hardly a day goes by without a new online video released by a political campaign somewhere. But, are campaigns using that video effectively?
Not really, according to Mark Trefgame in Ad Age. He says campaigns need to use the data they collect to better target their videos to undecided voters in order to have a greater impact.
What good is a Gingrich smear ad on TV if the voter is already against Gingrich? With online video, campaigns can target ads built around certain opponents or issues. It's completely possible to serve different creative to different users, based on the pages they've visited or the behaviors they've displayed (not that LiveRail endorses smear tactics, but you get the point).
Campaigns need to consider their strategies to develop custom data segments of the audiences they want to reach or deliver custom messages to. Technologies like retargeting enable a candidate to build up a real-time "database" of online visitors to specific pages or sites, or who have performed some action or behavior elsewhere on the web that could act as an indicator of political affiliation, and then reach back out to them as they travel the web.
These data sets can then be used for both targeting and creative customization, but planning how to acquire and build these data pools is a complex challenge. Campaigns also have to think about collecting campaign data and leveraging it to improve their results. Online lets them optimize on the fly, so campaigns need to monitor which ads perform best in real-time. Again, different types of data come from different campaigns. If the campaign goal is to solicit donations from core constituents, be sure to track conversions to learn whether viewers reached the donation page after an impression.