The Chesapeake Energy Corporation is spending all of its media budget on digital here at the Republican National Convention.
The firm and its CNG Now initiative are here promoting the benefits of using natural gas as an alternative for vehicle fuel to gasoline and diesel. It's targeting convention-goers who search for popular terms related to the event - like #RNC - with ads on Twitter. Some push its energy message, but others are more direct:
Chesapeake has worked with the team at Twitter for almost a year to execute targeted, promoted campaigns around various events, said Blake Jackson, the company's manager for digital communications. The Oklahoma-based firm produces natural gas and oil and is part of a consortium here at the RNC promoting natural gas vehicles as alternatives to gas and diesel. Currently, Honda sells a Civic that operates on natural gas, though the majority of vehicles that utilize the fuel are fleet vehicles such as waste trucks or city buses.
The firm decided to jump into speaking directly to convention attendees in its Twitter ads rather than focusing solely on issue advocacy, "because we were going to be one of the few sponsoring presences," said Jackson. Indeed, among the only other sponsors or non-media entities here are Google, Facebook, and Twitter.
The majority of natural gas fueling stations are located in Oklahoma, California, Utah, and Texas, said Jackson. That's why the firm tends to geo-target Twitter and Facebook ads to people in those states, when a new fueling station opens, for instance. "We're targeting down to the zipcode via Facebook advertising," Jackson added.
Chrysler urges federal support for natural gas vehicles. bddy.me/Nmccs7— CNGnow (@CNGnow) August 24, 2012
The Twitter ads here are having some impact, said Jackson, who said "influential media members" have mentioned CNG Now. "If we can get someone to give us that initial nod, we feel comfortable taking that from there," he said.
"Here at the RNC, all of our advertising spend is digtal," besides the money spent on a physical branded space here. "It demonstrates the growing interest from leadership."
Despite the fact the group is focused heavily on digital media here at the convention, "It's a new area for us," said Jackson. "We're still in the process of changing hearts and minds."
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Kate Kaye was Managing Editor at ClickZ News until October 2012. As a daily reporter and editor for the original news source, she covered beats including digital political campaigns and government regulation of the online ad industry. Kate is the author of Campaign '08: A Turning Point for Digital Media, the only book focused on the paid digital media efforts of the 2008 presidential campaigns. Kate created ClickZ's Politics & Advocacy section, and is the primary contributor to the one-of-a-kind section. She began reporting on the interactive ad industry in 1999 and has spoken at several events and in interviews for television, radio, print, and digital media outlets. You can follow Kate on Twitter at @LowbrowKate.
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