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Tom Barrett and Scott Walker's critical campaigns mean TV stations are cleaning up in advertising. (PHOTO: todaystmj4.com)

TV stations love the recall election

Welcome to the week before the June 5 recall election, during which all of the outside dollars each campaign can get its hands on are poured into advertising.

Local TV will get the bulk of the pie, and with an unplanned recall, I'd bet every GM is smiling while looking at the bottom lines.

Depending on the structure of each TV station, those extra dollars can be spent in some interesting ways. For example, through the May sweeps we saw each station put their newsrooms into high gear, pumping out investigative pieces. We saw the extra promotions on air on their stations, but we also heard more about it on local radio and through social media outlets.

This is where the Journal broadcast outlets can capitalize on their multiple properties.

"This traffic update is brought to you by Today's TMJ 4," could be often heard on 620 WTMJ-AM through the sweeps. Nice thing here, they didn't have to spend money to do it.

WISN, WDJT, WITI and WTMJ – when they weren't on 620 AM or 94.5 FM – all had to purchase airtime on other stations in hopes of getting you to tune in. Depending on how this week goes with political ad spending, we may see a larger push during the smaller October and larger November sweeps periods this fall.

The reason why the sweeps periods are so important is that they're the measurement the stations use to figure out the going rate for commercial airtime.

Speaking of Sweeps: WISN-TV Ch. 12 took first place for the 5, 6 and 10 p.m. evening newscasts in the race for the most viewers. According to Nielsen Media Research, WISN led at 10 p.m. Monday to Friday with a 9.3 household rating. WTMJ-TV Ch. 4 was second with an 8.0, WITI-TV Fox 6 had a 6.5 and WDJT-TV Ch. 58 had 6.2.

"We broke big stories, brought our viewers exclusive investigative content and kept people informed during a historical month for Wisconsin politics," WISN president and general manager Jan Wade said in a release. "In addition, we introduced two new teams of anchors at 5 and 10 p.m. and it is wonderful to see that viewers responded favorably."

Wade was referring the move to 5 p.m. for anchor Jason Newton, and the addition of Craig McKee to the team at 10 p.m. WISN 12 had a 5.8 rating at 5 p.m., followed by WTMJ (5.4), WITI (3.0) and WDJT (2.6). At 6 p.m., WISN led with a 6.8 as WTMJ recorded a 4.8 and WITI 3.4.

Who is the Best Hero: MTV wants to know what you think and it will look to Twitter to help figure it out live during the MTV Movie Awards set for Sunday night. The station is going social asking who is the best hero among nominees Captain America, Harry Potter, Katniss Everdeen from "The Hunger Games" and Jenk from "21 Jump Street."

Golden Idol: Time Warner Cable and the Milwaukee County Department on Aging will present the "Golden Idol" senior talent competition Tuesday, June 12 at Serb Hall. You can help determine an award winner by watching the top 10 finalists on Channel 411. The Viewer's Choice winner will be announced at the event, as each time an audition is viewed on the channel, it counts as a vote.

Reading More Into It: V100.7 FM and Clear Channel Media worked with WaterStone Bank, the Milwaukee Admirals and The UPS Stores of Wisconsin to help fight illiteracy in Milwaukee. With a kick-off event last week, the The Read & Rise program helped put books in the hands of students to help raise a love of reading.

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