5 Ways TV Can Avoid Losing Healthcare Dollars During Elections

by Liz Huff Second Street

The Problem

Election season is in full swing. Political ads are already taking over on-air spots and paying an unparalleled amount of money to do so. This leaves healthcare advertisers blocked and needing to redirect their ad dollars away from on-air spots.

How can you keep your core healthcare advertisers spending with you when you don’t have open inventory for spots?

The Solution

Create a digital promotions package for your advertiser. You’ll benefit by making your sales, and your healthcare advertiser will benefit from all of the following:

  • A robust email database
  • Valuable data for marketing and targeted messaging
  • New ways to get your message to customers

Here are 5 ways to keep those healthcare dollars with your station:

Sell a bundle of sponsored health quizzes.

Quizzes are a great way to engage a community, to bolster branding, and to collect valuable consumer data and emails. Plus, people love taking and sharing quizzes.

By providing an email opt-in, healthcare advertisers can quickly grow their email database. They can also gather consumer data that generates qualified leads. For example, a survey question about buying intent can reveal who is in the market for a procedure or for a new doctor.

WPSD-TV can attest to the benefits of a quiz bundle. The local hospital that sponsored a “Test Your Breast Cancer Knowledge” quiz ended up earning 2nd place in a national breast cancer awareness campaign!

Need more quiz ideas? Download our Quiz Playbook to get you started. Plus, check out our huge collection of turnkey quizzes – ready-to-run, customizable quizzes – which include:

  • Are You a Dental Hygiene Pro?
  • Healthy Eating Trivia
  • How Many Calories Does It Burn?
  • Test Your Breast Cancer Knowledge

Just imagine the consumer data your advertiser can generate with these quizzes.


Launch a sweepstakes.

Healthcare products make great prizes for sweepstakes. For example, your advertiser can generate huge results by giving away a teeth whitening service for a year, a hearing aid, or a lasik procedure.

Plus, sweepstakes can lead to enormous email acquisition through email opt-ins. This is huge news for your advertiser, as email is the #1 driver of digital conversions.

The Win a Whiter Smile sweepstakes, run by WPSD-TV, was a major success for a local dentistry office earning them nearly 1,500 opt-ins. Plus, because of great survey questions, more than 200 people specifically asked to be contacted by the dentistry about future procedures.

WPSD Dentist Sweeps

Score from a photo contest.

While submission contests have a higher barrier to entry than quizzes as contestants have to upload a picture or a video, this allows for huge branding, email acquisition, and data generation opportunities.

It’s easy to align a photo submission contest with your healthcare advertiser’s brand. For example, your advertiser can sponsor a Healthy Selfie or a Get Fit photo contest.

Cutest baby and cutest pet photo submission contests are always big hits. In fact, 98PXY had huge success with their Cutest Baby Contest, with more than 15,000 users placing more than 16 million votes.


Sell a ballot.

Ballots provide an excellent means of engaging a community in a meaningful way. This should be the key selling point for your healthcare advertiser who needs exposure with their customers during the election season.

For example, The Signal created a high school football ballot that allowed their advertisers to interact directly with prospective clients. In fact, this ballot generated over 30,000 votes and 1,000 email opt-ins and helped promote the sponsor hospital as a household name in the community.


For more information, check out our Voter’s Choice Playbook, which spells out all the details on how you can execute a successful ballot promotion.

Run a native campaign.

The healthcare field provides an ideal opportunity for you run a native campaign educating your audience about specific health topics.

Paired with educational content on their site, a quiz can be a creative way for your audience to learn about these topics and connect with the advertiser in a unique way.

Philly.com created a “Are you taking care of yourself?” health quiz for a local healthcare facility. The quiz was published right alongside other content on the newspaper’s website.


Take Action

At your next meeting, get your healthcare advertisers excited about all their options during the election season.
Here are two steps you can take:

Step One: Modify this sample annual buy calendar to meet your advertiser’s needs:


Step Two: Download the Sales Guide to Promotions, which devotes an entire chapter to healthcare advertisers.

From needs analysis questions, to survey questions, to email opt-ins, this guide lays out all the tools and knowledge you need to sell promotions.

Get your copy of the Seller's Guide to Promotions.