Nearly 1/​2 of Voters Have a Second Screen on when Watching TV

Rubicon Project released the findings of a survey of 1,500 likely voters that reveals key insights into voters’ media habits. The findings have the potential to influence how advertising dollars are allocated to reach voters.

According to Real-​TimeDaily, Rubicon Survey Flags Shifts In Voters' Media Habits:

"TV isn't the dominant medium for voters: Likely voters spend an equal amount of time or more online vs. watching TV. Highly coveted independent voters are nearly twice as likely to spend more time online than in front of their TV."

"Ad skipping is prevalent: Nearly half of all likely voters reported using a DVR for most of their TV watching and two­-​thirds report skipping commercials ”all or most of the time” when watching recorded programming."

"Second screens are key: Nearly half of all likely voters have a second screen on “always or most of the time” when watching TV. About one­-​third of Baby Boomers have a second screen open always or most of the time while watching TV," Tobi Elkin wrote. And AudienceSCAN data backs this up: 58.5% of U.S. adults said it's usually true that they use a computer, iPad or tablet while watching TV.

"If voters are online, they turn to video: More than one-​third of likely voters report watching online videos daily, with four out of 10 Democratic and independent voters watching videos daily online."

"Gamers matter: Half of all likely voters play games weekly on their mobile devices. More than one­-​third of likely Democrats and a quarter of independent voters are gaming daily."

"Voters click: More than a third (36%) of those who have seen a political ad have taken a positive action such as clicking through to the content. Engagement with digital ads on a mobile device is nearly twice as strong, with three in five (64%) of those that have seen a digital political ad on mobile taking action," Elkin said. Take this stat and use it to sell some mobile ads. 43% of adults are on Android phones and in the past 6 months, 12% of adults used mobile devices to watch a video from a local television website via their website or app.

"Total recall on digital devices: Nearly a third of the electorate reported being able to recall seeing a specific digital political advertisement so far this cycle."

"Rubicon projects that super PACs will spend more than $10 billion targeting and attempting to engage likely voters over the next 10 months."

2016 presents a real opportunity for innovation and change in how campaigns and candidates reach the always connected voter,” stated Dallas Lawrence, SVP, Rubicon Project. “Spending billions of dollars on TV advertising like we have witnessed from candidates and super PACs for the past 30 years just isn’t going to move the needle this election cycle as much as in the past.” Keep this in mind when approaching candidates for digital ads. Sell them on social ads, because AudienceSCAN data shows 27% took action after seeing ads on a social networks in the past month. And 55.5% took action based on sponsored search results (like on Google, Yahoo or Bing) in the past year.

"Lawrence said an important shift is taking place in where and how voters are spending their time and money — and ultimately, where they are consuming the content that shapes their voting behavior. "Not only are voters going digital, but our research has shown that when they view digital content, they’re actually less distracted and more engaged, with three in five of those that have seen a digital ad on mobile taking action.”

"Rubicon Project worked with global polling firm Penn Schoen Berland to conduct 1,500 online interviews among likely voters in the U.S. presidential election. The survey sample included 597 who identify as Democrats, 479 as Republicans and 398 as Independents. The interviews were conducted from Jan. 8 to Jan. 12."

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies, or with the SalesFuel API. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.

Courtney Huckabay
Courtney is the Editor for SalesFuel Today. She analyzes secondary customer research and our primary AudienceSCAN research. Courtney is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.