National advertisers who pulled their ads from Rush Limbaugh’s radio show have seen their perception favorability levels increase among liberal Americans, but decline among conservative Americans.
YouGov analyzed the aggregate scores of 58 of Limbaugh’s national advertisers who decided to pull support from the program and are also tracked in its BrandIndex service and found a sharp divergence in how liberal and conservative Americans reacted to the news.
Conservative impressions for the brands held steady for the first several days before experiencing a modest, albeit statistically significant decline – perhaps “punishing” the brands for dropping their advertising in the media storm that followed Limbaugh’s comments about Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke on February 29th.
Conversely, impressions for the 58 brands among liberals rose almost immediately as advertisers, one after another, announced they would suspend or cancel advertising support for the show.
Currently, liberal perception of the 58 national advertisers is still significantly above where it was on March 1st, even after peaking on March 7th. Conservative perception is less than where it was on March 1st, indicating a cumulative negative reaction as advertisers began leaving in greater numbers.
It’s worth noting that liberal perception of these brands had been significantly lower than that of conservatives before Rush Limbaugh made his comments.
58 of Rush Limbaugh’s national advertisers were measured with YouGov BrandIndex’s Impression score, which asks respondents: "Do you have a general positive or negative feeling about the brand?"
YouGov BrandIndex measurement scores range from 100 to -100 and are compiled by subtracting negative feedback from positive. A zero score means equal positive and negative feedback.