US Digital Political Ad Spending, 2016-2020

Chart: US Digital Political Ad Spending, 2016-2020

Digital political ad spending is expected to surge from $388.9 million last year to $954.8 million this year.

While a massive increase in spending should be expected from a off-year to a presidential election year, the difference is likely even more pronounced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the last presidential election, spending on digital political ads for federal, state and local campains amounted to $353.5 million in 2016. That number accounted for 9.1% of total political ad spending.

By contrast, this year digital spending will consume 15.3% of all political ads, according to eMarketer.

Grace Briscoe, vice president of Candidates + Causes at Centro, joins eMarketer principal analyst at Insider Intelligence Nicole Perrin to discuss how political advertisers are leaning on connected TV, audience targeting, Facebook and more as they work on fundraising and getting out the vote.

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