April 20, 2021
In March, discussion of Georgia’s SB. 202 swept the nation. Presented by some as voter suppression, and others as a guarantee of election security, two groups went up on air to present their case to the people of Georgia. Fair Fight Action opposed SB. 202, while Heritage Action for America supported the bill. AdImpact partnered with G2 Analytics to analyze public response to the ads. Using their proprietary Moment-to-Moment Video Scoring Platform with an online survey, G2 collected data from 280 likely Georgian voters. These subjects were exposed to all three ads that had aired about the issue. They then provided quantitative feedback on their attitudes and opinions of the election reform legislation. The advertising analytics results are below:
First on air was Fair Fight Action with the spot “Voting Laws” which ran from 3/1-3/15 in Atlanta, Augusta, Savannah, Columbus, Macon, and Albany. Fair Fight put about $750k behind that ad. On 3/19, Heritage Action for America responded with “Election Security Reform” which ran in Atlanta until 3/27. This ad had just over $500k behind it. On 3/23, Fair Fight Action went back up with a new ad, “Voting is Our Right” in the same markets and it aired until 4/4 with over $500k behind it.
Testing the Ads
Each of these ads was tested in front of 280 likely voters in Georgia to gauge their response. Select any of the ads below to see how voters, grouped by Democratic, Republican, and Independent party affiliation, responded to each moment of the ad.
Fair Fight Action: Voting is Our Right
Fair Fight Action: Voting Laws
Heritage Action for America: Election Security Reform
With an overall G2 Score of 49, Heritage Action for America’s (HAA) ad “Election Security Reform” outperformed both ads run by Fair Fight Action (FFA); “Voting Is Our Right” (33) and “Voting Laws” (19).
Of the two spots run by FAA, “Voting Is Our Right” was the highest performing spot and significantly overperformed with target audience segments of Democratic voters (85), African American voters (80), other minority voters (78).
Change in Opinion on SB. 202 Post Exposure
Of likely voters exposed to all three ads, support of SB. 202 increased by about 8%. Pre-exposure, the bill had a net support of -4, indicating that more viewers opposed the bill than supported it. Post-exposure, the bill had a net support of +4, showing that viewers were more likely to support it after viewing the ads. The largest factor in the change was viewers who previously reported that they needed more information pre-exposure to supporting the legislation after viewing the ads. The opposition categories made only slight increases, while “Strongly Support” saw the largest increase, from 23% to 33% of viewers.
50% of respondents who indicated that they either needed more information or were not sure how they felt about the law reported supporting it after exposure to the ads. Only 29% reported opposing the law after viewing the ads who had formerly said they needed more information. Overall, the data indicates a moderate increase in approval of the bill following exposure to the ads.
In today’s fast-moving political environment, it is imperative to put the right message in front of voters at the right time. In this scenario, Fair Fight Action was on the airwaves for two weeks unopposed, running ads against SB. 202. However, as G2’s analysis has shown, the ad was not particularly effective in swaying public opinion. By the time they switched creative to the more effective “Voting is Our Right,” Heritage Action was up with their ad which proved to be the most effective at persuading voters. A commanding GOP advantage in the Georgia legislature may have meant the bill would have passed regardless of public pressure, but as G2’s research indicates, the pro-side was more persuasive in their advertising.
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