Do Donkeys and Elephants Belong at the Zoo? Advertising to Political Demographics

targeting generations of voters with political advertising

With the political season in full swing, there are plenty of political ads to be found in every medium, from TV and mobile to radio and print. With so many channel options to choose from, hiring a qualified advertising agency is important to gain the most reach for your business. Furthermore, generational groups vary on more than just political leanings; the technology and culture of each generation has created a unique profile for each demographic that must be approached differently.

Generation Y or Millennials: Born 1977-1995

Millennials are now the largest age demographic in the country, encompassing 75.4 million people. They are also one of the hardest voter groups to reach because of their affinity for mobile media consumption and avoidance of obvious selling tactics.

To capture the attention of Millennials, your company must show transparency in its motives and engage in corporate social responsibility. Because of this voter demographic’s access to and expertise in online resources, they can easily discover whether your products and services are a good fit for them.

When reaching Millennials politically, it’s important to note that they view most media content between the hours of 8 p.m. and midnight. As mentioned before, Millennials are the most mobile-focused group. To reach them, it’s best to concentrate on mobile ads, or at least digital political ads. With the help of a social media strategist who can compress your message into 140 characters, you can align your ads to what Millennials are posting, liking and sharing.

Generation X: Born 1965-1976

This group is a smaller, but highly important voter demographic. Similar to Millennials, members of Generation Xers are wary of committing to anything too quickly, but they do favor material items, unlike Baby Boomers.

If you are trying to reach this group, advertising with strict political party affiliations might not be the best strategy because Generation X is the least likely generation to show unwavering support for any one political party.

Just like Millennials, Generation Xers prefers to consume content between 8 p.m. and midnight. However, rather than use mobile devices, they favor bigger screens and more control in the form of laptops or desktops. This means that reaching Generation X requires digital political advertising, something that an experienced advertising agency can accomplish for you. Discover how digital marketing can work your business.

Baby Boomers: Born 1946-1964

Baby Boomers make up 50% of all retail sales. With the largest disposable income of any age demographic, this group has the time and money to make luxury purchases. Baby Boomers also consume political content in a variety of ways. Unlike Millennials who prefer mobile above all else, Baby Boomers use a mix of traditional and digital channels. These voters prefer TV the most, but online use is steadily increasing. Facebook is a popular medium where Baby Boomers share 19% more content than other demographics.

While Millennials and Generation Xers are night owls, Baby Boomers are early birds. They consume the most media between the hours of 5 a.m. and noon. Similar to Generation X, this cohort prefers desktops or laptops, rather than mobile devices. To effectively market to Baby Boomers, a mixed advertising campaign is necessary. There should be traditional and digital elements in order to reach both the old-fashioned and tech-savvy members of this demographic.

Whether you’re trying to reach Millennials, Generation Xers, Baby Boomers or all three, it’s important to tailor the elements of your advertising campaign to the media habits of your target audience. An advertising agency can conduct in-depth demographic research and implement the right advertising campaign that meets your needs.

Choose Appleton this election season. Appleton Creative is an award-winning, full-service Orlando advertising agency that works with local, national and international clients to deliver impressive ad campaigns, branding, print, web, public relations, social media and video services—all in-house. At Appleton, we want to learn about your business, empower your marketing team and be your creative resource. Your advertising goals are worth a conversation: contact us at 407-246-0092 or

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