As super PAC and candidate campaign spending floods to TV ads, a large chunk of voters may miss them, said video ad firm SAY Media. The “Off the Grid 2012” updates data presented in Say’s 2011 “Voter’s Going Off the Grid” report. Both studies polled how likely voters were consuming video content across various platforms.
The study showed that more than 40 percent of likely voters prefer to consume video content via sources such as computers, streaming devices, DVD and DVRs as opposed to live TV. The study also showed potential voters watched about 20 hours of video per week. However, nearly half of that programming is not being being consumed through live TV.
With 29 percent of participants stating that they had not watched live TV in the past seven days, nearly one-third of the voter population may not have seen the latest campaign TV ad messages. In 2011, the Say study found 31 percent of likely voters hadn’t watched live TV in the past week. The firm considers this statistically flat.
Like Say Media’s 2011 study, the bi-partisan research was conducted in conjunction with Republican digital agency Targeted Victory and Democratic digital agency Chong and Koster, along with pollsters on both sides of the aisle. Targeted Victory is handling online ad buying for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.
“With the exception of DVDs, likely voters say they are consuming more content across different media platforms, emphasizing that American voters are continuing to shift away from live TV content and are choosing other platforms for video consumption,” notes the report. “Nearly a quarter of likely voters plan to switch to digital streaming in the next year or two.”
Mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are also garnering interest from likely voters with nearly 50 percent owning a smartphone and 32 percent saying they own a tablet.
Smartphone ownership in the past year has increased significantly in the key swing states of Florida and Ohio. Florida saw a spike of 15 percent in smartphone owners from 38 percent in 2011 to 53 percent in 2012. Likely voters in Ohio had a 13 percent increase in smartphone ownership from 28 percent in 2011 to 41 percent in 2012.
The study also found 43 percent of smartphone and tablet owners plan to vote for Romney compared to 47 percent of smartphone and tablet owners who said they’ll vote for President Barack Obama.
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The past week in digital was once again dominated by video: interactive videos on Facebook and Instagram, YouTube's live streaming and Amazon challenging Netflix.