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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, July 31, 2014

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In Movies & TV Commentary

President Barack Obama plugged HealthCare.gov on Zach Galifianakis' talk show, "Between Two Ferns."

Obama's "Between Two Ferns" video hits target audience


For some people, pushing politics aside for a simple moment is impossible. I ask you to do that here, but if you can't, rant below and move on.

Getting more attention than the finale of "The Bachelor," is a small digital interview with President Barack Obama on Zach Galifianakis' talk show, "Between Two Ferns." The plug for HealthCare.gov hits the audience where it lives – online.

By the time this article appears online, the nightly network newscasts will have this video sliced and diced for a segment. The rants will already have started on the 24-hour cable news outlets. Print editorials will run in afternoon editions and morning papers tomorrow. Our local conservative radio talk show hosts will hit this digital video, as well.

The traditional media outlets will be in reaction mode, as it talks to an older audience. This clip is viral, and has had more viewers than any Sunday morning TV network political show could.

Obama appears on the digital interview show known for its less-than-smart or tactful host and deals with questions like, where will you build your Presidential Library, in Hawaii or your home country of Kenya?

See the clip here.

You see, those who live and breathe politics, no matter the slant, are tuned into traditional media. The young people who could benefit from signing up for insurance are not necessarily tapped into that world. This is more about marketing than it is about politics … digital media will reach more young adults than print, radio or television.

Parents and grandparents can talk about insurance coverage with young adults, but that would only have a limited reach. President Obama could go on a bus tour, taking to community groups, but that would only have a small audience, as well.

The truth is, if a friend of a young adult likes the way Galifianakis picks on the president and shares it on Facebook or Twitter, then the spot did its job.

Whether or not you support the Affordable Care Act doesn't sway the fact that when done correctly, the right media outlet can be used to reach its targeted "micro" audience or can be "niche-casted" to move the desired demographic.

I'd say that this viral video effort hit its target viewers, and drew the awareness of many more.

WHERE IT COUNTS: Local TV ratings can be a fun race to watch as area stations compete for your attention. There has always been a fight about how one chooses the ratings leader; is the leader the winner of the 10 p.m. broadcast, or the winner from sign-on to sign off? I go with the latter.

WITI-TV Fox 6 scored a ratings win, sweeping the local newscast slots on Tuesday. The morning newscast led the day with a 4.0 rating 4:30 and 7 a.m., when WDJT-TV, WISN-TV and WTMJ-TV all have local news. Fox 6 scored 6.6 at 5 p.m., a 6.5 at 6 p.m. and a 6.7 at 10 p.m., besting all of the other stations with newscasts at those times.

In this market, a full-day sweep is difficult to earn. Traditionally, they split the leads in different parts of the day.

Here are the breakdowns:

4:30-7 a.m.: WITI 4.0, WISN 3.3, WTMJ 2.3, WDJT 1.0

5 p.m: WITI 6.6, WISN 5.9, WTMJ 3.6, WDJT 3.5

6 p.m.: WITI 6.5, WTMJ 5.0, WISN 4.7, WDJT ("Jeopardy" 8.7)

10 p.m.: WITI 6.7, WDJT 5.6, WTMJ 5.5, WISN 4.8

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