Presidential Campaigns Snubbing Texas Print?
In what is fixing to be the biggest battle in the state since the Alamo, it seems that all four major presidential campaigns have decided to forego Hispanic print advertising in the run-up to the crucial March 4th
Texas Presidential primary.
On Tuesday, the Clinton and Obama campaigns began running radio spots targeting Latinos. Clinton's spot is titled "Nuestra Amiga" and highlights the senator's Historic ties to the Hispanic community. Obama's Spanish-language ad features excerpts from speeches, and a Hispanic male's voice talking about how Obama rose from a humble upbringing to go to Harvard Law School and serve as a community activist in Chicago.
“It’s really amazing to me that in such a close race, neither the Clinton nor Obama campaign is actively pursuing the Latino newspaper reader,” says Loida Ruiz, National Sales Manager of Hispanic Publications at the Houston Chronicle.
Both campaigns are reportedly focusing most of their efforts on television and radio advertising. “My sense, after speaking with the media buyers for both campaigns is that they feel they will get more for their money by focusing solely on broadcast,” says Ruiz. “When TV stations make the argument that Hispanics don’t read, what they are really saying is that Hispanic television viewers don’t read. There is a whole host of educated, politically-engaged Latinos who are scouring the newspapers for political news and information. If the campaigns are looking to reach those voters, then they should really be doing so in print.” Ruiz says that the Clinton campaign cited budget as an issue.
Richard Voneye, an account executive at Rumbo Houston, has had the same experience as Loida Ruiz. “I’ve seen a fair amount of ads on TV, but as far as print is concerned, we haven’t been approached by either the Democratic or the Republican campaigns. They might be waiting until the last minute to place, or just depending on the national news to get exposure.”
According to Cesar Rincon, General Manager of Houston’s TV Lotus Channel 43, says that, so far, “We’ve had no inquiries from any of the candidates. The other night, for the first time, I saw some English ads for Obama and Hillary, but that’s all I’ve seen,” says Rincon. “Again, this might be a completely different story a week from now, but that’s where things stand presently.”
And indeed it is not only possible that the campiagns will ramp-up TV spending as March 4th approaches, but highly probable. In the week prior to the Nevada primary, both campaigns doubled what they had previously spent in a last-minute ad-blitz (See Related Article below).
Even still, the likelihood that such a windfall will strike the state's Hispanic print market, for the moment, seems as distant as the chance of rain on a scorching Texas day.
Related Article: Clinton/Obama’s Hispanic Spending Horserace
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