NRA Advertising Surges Ahead Of Its Annual Meeting

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Web ad measurement firm Pathmatics posted research which shows the National Rifle Association recently upped its advertising substantially. It released the new research after several media reported on its earlier results on the same subject.

According to the research:

The NRA drastically cut their advertising spend across digital (desktop display, mobile web, pre-roll video) and Facebook mobile starting on the day of the shooting. For the four-day period starting 2/15/2018, there was 91% drop in daily average spend to effectively $0.

Between February 19 – 21, their paid campaigns aggressively resumed and spending increased at least through the 27th. The NRA’s spend on February 27th alone, at over $58,000/day, was 600% higher than the average daily spend for the two-weeks leading up to February 14th.

The Pathmatics theory, which seems reasonable, is that the NRA wanted to be as close to invisible as possible immediately after the shooting as possible. Just days afterward, it wanted its position on guns to be as widely disseminated as possible.

Pathmatics researchers also observed:

Facebook ad spend by the NRA started to climb on February 21st, and by the 27th, Facebook spend peaked at $33,400/day, 6.5 times the daily spend compared to the first 2-weeks of February.

By March 14th, they had increased further to $67,500, more than 10-times their typical spend.

The top campaigns have been membership offers, with their Free Bag offer being the most frequent in February. Other themes include gun rights across state lines and “Defending Freedom.” On March 1st, they began the “Fight or Surrender” campaign featuring spokesperson Dana Loesch.

NRA has started to promote its annual meeting in Dallas, which will be a critical event. It is another means to get its message out, particularly to its members. The NRA will use the huge gathering to market its point of view on firearms. There are bound to be aggressive protests by anti-gun groups in the city at the same time.  The meeting lasts three days and draws over 800 exhibitors in a convention area which measures over 650,000 square feet.  Almost all the exhibitors make gun, or gun related products.