Iowa television stations are warning retailers their Christmas ads could get bumped this year by last minute political spots. Ross Reardon, sales manager for WHO-TV in Des Moines, says with so many candidates running for president and so much money being raised – there’s a lot of demand for TV ad time. That’s good for his department but bad for the local hardware store that wants to advertise snowblowers for Christmas.
“We have a finite amount of time,” Reardon says of the political season, “and unfortunately our local advertisers are left out, displaced lets say.” However, Reardon says they’ll work hard to keep their local customers happy and profitable.
If a customer’s ad is displaced during WHO’s 10 o’clock news, for instance, Reardon says they’ll find a spot for it in the morning news. Reardon says his staff has been warning advertisers that they may get bumped if a political candidate is willing to pay top dollar for their time slot.
Don Necker, vice president of Necker’s Jewelers in Dewitt and Davenport, says that wouldn’t bother him in January, but it could hurt if it happens the week before Christmas. Necker says 25 percent of his annual business comes during the ten days before Christmas.
“If we’re off the week before Christmas, that’ll be interesting,” Necker says, “but I don’t think we’re going to get bumped that much. And the TV stations will bonus you spots for everything you get bumped too – so if you get bumped from the 10 o’clock news, they might give you two or three on Jay Leno then.”
Necker says despite the hassle, he’s glad Iowa is home to the first in the nation caucuses. He says anything that helps the local economy, helps him.