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Huddled Masses Helps Early Voting Advocates Reach African American Voters

A flexible and smart digital strategy delivers results during a crucial election

Huddled Masses Helps Early Voting Advocates Reach African American Voters

Published on

Jun 10, 2024

Written by

Huddled Masses


Case Study

The Client

Ensuring all votes count is essential for a functioning democracy. But not all voters can make it to the polls on election day, or can afford to spend hours waiting on line in districts that lack adequate polling stations.

Realizing that early voting is essential to allowing all people to vote, a voting advocacy group wanted to reach African Americans voters in the crucial battleground states of Florida, New York, North Carolina and Georgia.

The Challenge: Reaching Multicultural Audiences at Scale in Specific Locations

Reaching multicultural audiences is notoriously difficult in digital advertising. In election years, many people turn to smaller and more local publications that cater to multicultural audiences for details on polling stations, early voting, and candidate background.

The client wanted to reach African American audiences at scale in three areas, in the publications that mattered. Moreover, the client realized that campaign flexibility is table stakes, and that it needed to focus ad spend in the channels that delivered the best results.

That’s when they turned to Huddled Masses. There were two key reasons for partnering with Huddled Masses. The first is our direct access to the largest multicultural audiences through our sister company, Colossus SSP. Second, Huddled Masses account teams serve as an extension of our clients’ team, taking on tasks and offering expert advice to ensure campaign success.

Additionally, the client faced some budget constraints, and wanted to reach a CPC goal of $4.00 and a CTR rate better than .1%.

The Solution

Huddled Masses began with a multi-pronged launch strategy that featured:

  • Behavioral Targeting: We targeted audience segments of African American Voters across each target state.
  • Retargeting: We mapped specific actions on a site that indicate a propensity to vote, and created remarketing strategies based on these actions.
  • Contextual Targeting. Thanks to our relationship with local, national and niche leveraged contextual targeting to reach eligible voters on local news sites and as well as content covering election news.
  • Site-Specific Inclusion Lists. We created site-specific inclusion lists for each geographic for targeting. These sites included local news sites as well as sites that index highly for African Americans.
  • Social: We ran ads on Instagram and Facebook using ZIP-code targeting to reach areas in which a strong impact would deliver the strongest results.

One week after the campaign launched we began analyzing the data with an eye towards optimization and shifting the budget that drove the most conversions. This exercise allows us to refine our strategies, eliminating those that didn’t work and focus on those that did.

Our optimizations included:

  • Increased bid amount and spend in the remarketing strategy, which was proving a success
  • Created a lookalike audience using “online scoring” to isolate the most valuable site visitors
  • Paused contextual targeting and shifted that budget into behavioral “African American Voters” as it performed will.
  • Essence magazine performed extremely well, so we activated a PMP
  • Removed the underperforming creative concepts and ad sizes, and shifted ad spend on the top performers.

The Results

Our strategy not only achieved the client's goal, we significantly exceeded them:



Results Achieved







As a result of the incredible response to the campaign, the organization saw a 17% increase in early voter turnout. Like Huddled Masses other clients, they said they’d be using us again in their next political campaign.

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