Political Will Dominate TV Ads in Maine and Nevada in 2020

Television viewers in Maine and Nevada should be prepared to be bombarded with political advertising, according to data from BIA Advisory Services. BIA estimates that almost half (47%) of $6.55 billion in political advertising dollars in 2020 will go to local over-the-air TV stations for 2020. Some markets will see more than half of TV ad dollars in 2020 from political.

This fall according to our forecast the five markets with the largest percent of total TV advertising spend coming from political all fall in two states – Maine and Nevada. Four of the five markets with political as the biggest spender in 2020 are small markets.

“In some of the smaller markets, one thing to keep an eye on is how the huge volume of political advertising could crowd out other advertisers during primary and general election seasons. That may have an impact on advertisers and media companies, and we’ll certainly factor that into our forecasting as we go through the Fall,” said Mark Fratrik, Chief Economist and SVP, BIA Advisory Services.

With a Senate race that is expected to be hotly contested, two markets in Maine, Portland-Auburn (#84) and Bangor (#155), could see over half of their local OTA TV advertising revenue coming from political dollars. While Maine’s third-largest market, Presque Isle (#206), could see nearly half of its OTA TV revenue from political according to BIA’s forecast.

Political pundits consider Nevada to be a wild-card state in 2020 even though Nevada leans democratic. Political advertising in small market Reno (#108) is expected to account for over half of spend on local over-the-air TV, while in larger market Las Vegas (#40), political could be nearly half.

BIA’s new political advertising estimates will be provided to the firm’s BIA ADVantage clients. BIA ADVantage delivers local market advertising intelligence for 94 business categories, including political, for every TV and radio market in the nation. For information on how to subscribe or how to purchase the political forecast for a local market, email sales@bia.com. The local political advertising forecast can be purchased online here.

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