The Buzz

July 8, 2013

I’m Dave Helling, and I approved this message

Recent sale of WDAF, other stations reflects enormous revenue from political commericals in even years. But do the ads work? The evidence is mixed.

The Buzz

The facts, faces and hum of local politics with Steve Kraske and Dave Helling

Do TV commercials help political campaigns?



, and you might answer yes. It certainly seems like campaigns continue to view the 30-second spot as the cornerstone of a race, and raise money accordingly.

And spend it.

(But see


from MinnPost.)

(But read

this, from David Carr

in the NYT: “Local news is still a powerful driver of profits, especially in battleground states during election years, but not if costs have been cut to the point where an anchor is sitting in a studio reading the newspaper over commodity video.”)

Political ads used to be the centerpiece of budgets for Missouri television stations. The collapse of the state as a presidential battleground, coupled with less-than-competitive statewide races in recent years, has cost Missouri stations millions in political ad revenue.

But there are also signs the 30-second ad on over-the-air TV

may be dropping in effectiveness anyway


Ask Karl Rove.

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