Frequently Asked Questions


About DemocraticAds.com

How does DemocraticAds.com target an audience online?

DemocraticAds.com matches offline voter file data against online internet cookie, device ID, and social media data to create an audience of people and target it with digital advertisements. Use one of our built-in targeting segments or your own custom data to serve digital ads to the exact voters you need to win the election.

On which sites will my ads appear?

Our technology proactively targets actual voters with ads. The technology is similar to how Amazon will serve you ads for products you’ve looked at, however, our technology requires no initial action by the voter. This means we serve ads wherever your audience goes online — that could be NYTimes.com, the local news site, or that particular voter’s favorite blog. We only use brand-safe websites, so that your ads aren’t on the types of websites you wouldn’t want your campaign associated with!

NGP VAN Integration

How do I import a custom list for targeting on DemocraticAds.com?

This process originates on the SmartVAN and Votebuilder platforms by NGP VAN. Once you have created a custom list on either of those platforms, and that list is comprised of at least 5,000 people, you will be able to select the “Advertising” button. This will guide you through the easy process of importing your custom lists onto DemocraticAds.com. You can view all of your custom audiences here.

I don’t see an advertising button – what do I do?

Contact the NGP VAN administrator for your state. Also, feel free to reach out to Support at [email protected], and we can see how we can help.

How small can my custom list be?

In order to use your custom list for advertising on DemocraticAds.com, your custom lists from NGP VAN must consist of at least 5,000 people. This limit is a matter of legal and privacy compliance.

My “Advertising” button is greyed-out and I can’t click it – what do I do?

Your list is too small – this will happen if your custom list is comprised of fewer than 5,000 people.

Is there an additional cost for using custom lists?

Not at all! The rates that we use for custom lists are the very same that we use for our standard audience campaigns.

Registering

How do I create an account?

Just click the “Create an Account” button on the homepage or go to https://www.democraticads.com/register. A user can register using their NGPVAN ActionID login, their Facebook credentials, or by providing the required information to us, including a name, email address and a phone number.

I’ve created an account but it says I need to be approved. Why?

We’re a proudly Democratic/progressive firm, and our technology is a powerful tool that can have critical effects on influencing voters and winning elections. Therefore, we need to make sure that DemocraticAds.com remains exclusively in good hands, and the approval process allows us to quickly vet all users to ensure that their mission aligns with ours.

Building A Campaign

I’m running a race, but my district isn’t an available geography? Can I still use DemocraticAds.com?

Yes! If you have an NGP VAN account, try building a custom list of your voters and importing into our platform. If you don’t use NGP VAN, contact Support at [email protected].

What are display ads?

Display ads are banner advertisements, served across mobile and desktop channels, that will appear on the top, on the side, and inline with content on the websites where your target audience browses. We recommend the cross-device display option, which allows us to target voters regardless of what device they’re using.

What are video pre-roll ads?

A video pre-roll advertisement is a 15 or 30 second video that plays before any content that one might watch on an embedded video player — on CNN.com, ESPN.com or any other brand-safe site with video content. At DSPolitical, we only buy non-skippable, user-initiated video ad inventory - which just means that your ad will play before a video that the voter actively chose to view, and they will not be able to skip your advertisement.

What are native ads?

Native ads match the feel and format of the publisher’s webpage. The ad placement appears as a recommended story on the site, and a click on the ad redirects to your desired landing page.

What time of day will my campaign start/end?

Our ad campaigns run midnight to midnight. So if your flight dates are July 1st – July 5th, your ad campaign will begin on as soon as the clock strikes 12:01 AM (EST) on July 1st, and will end at 11:59PM on July 5th.

What is an “audience”?

An audience is made up of the of people you want to serve ads to. For example, you may want to targeted Weak or Strong Democrats, with a Low, Medium or High Propensity to turn out to vote, who all also happen to be Registered Voters. In this case, you would use the GOTV audience. We have three pre-built audiences available on DemocraticAds.com: GOTV, Persuasion, and Likely Voters. You can also import a custom audience using NGP VAN.

What is an impression?

An impression is served whenever an ad loads on the screen of someone in your target audience.

Why is the suggested budget really high? What does lowering the budget do to the effectiveness of the campaign?

The “full budget” is the cost for serving the absolute maximum number of impressions given the provided timeframe, geography, and audience. Users can use a custom budget to fit their financial means, which will scale down the number of impressions served. A larger budget means the targeted audience will be hit at a higher frequency with your advertisements than would be the case if you used a lower budget.

What is a landing page?

The landing page is the website you would like your audience to be taken to should they click on your advertisement.

I don’t have creatives – can you make them for me?

Yes! We can build advertisements for you using our template feature, which comes at an additional cost of $250, or you can work one-on-one with one of our designers to create an ad, which comes at an additional cost of $750. We do not provide video creative services.

Do I need ALL of these creative sizes or can I just submit one?

We need all of the noted creative sizes. The sizes are industry standard, and having all sizes allows us to place the ad on a wide range of different websites. We also accept the following non-required sizes: 300x600, 250x250, 320x480, 970x250, and 320x100px.

After Campaign Launch

How do I monitor my campaign?

On the campaign summary page, there is a Reports tab that will show you the progress of your campaign. Basic reports are available 24 hours after the launch of the campaign and graphs are available 48 hours after the launch of the campaigns.

My campaign doesn’t seem to be performing well – what should I do?

We monitor each campaign closely to ensure there are no issues. However, if you have any concerns on a live campaign, you can contact Support at [email protected]

Support

Why won’t my creatives upload?

It’s important that all banners and videos meet the required file size and dimensional specifications. These are industry standards that must be adhered to in order to ensure that your ads can be uploaded correctly onto the sites where your audience will be. 

My payment isn’t going through – what should I do?

First, ensure that there isn’t a problem with your finance department or bank. Beyond that, contact Support at [email protected]

I have a problem/question not solved/answered here, what do I do?

Email Support at [email protected] or use the chat feature in the bottom right-hand corner. We will get back to you as soon as humanly possible.