What Businesses Can Learn From Donald Trump’s Email Marketing Failures Lauren Nelson | July 18th, 2016
The Trump campaign made waves last week with the release of a poorly designed new logo. Like, really poorly designed. Like, begging for all kinds of jabs and jokes of a NSFW nature. And as some pointed out, there really was no excuse for the selection.
— Michael Deppisch (@deppisch) July 15, 2016
It took the team 24 hours of online ridicule to realize their mistake and pull the logo out of circulation. Frankly, I can’t believe it took them that long.
Will the ill-fated design have any significant impact on the campaign? Probably not. If we’re being honest, there have been a slew of PR and marketing missteps made by Team Trump in the election cycle thus far, and none of them have had the impact one might expect.
But there is one arena in which poor marketing strategy is have a deleterious effect on the campaign: email marketing.
It was the 2008 election that really propelled email marketing to the status of a core component of an effective campaign, serving as a huge driver of campaign donations. By 2012, the numbers were astounding. As MarketingLand reports:
One statistic that still jumps out: Obama’s 2012 campaign cost $690 million, a staggering kitty. What’s more impressive is how the majority of those dollars were raised through email.
Approximately 4.5 million people donated, with an average gift of $53. Toby Fallsgraff, who directed the 2012 email program, told MarketingSherpa, “You can do the math and figure out a lot of people gave more than once.”
It wasn’t solely because of their passion for the incumbent or their love of the process. Fallgraff’s team used an email model that was beautifully orchestrated and integrated.
The candidates in this election cycle learned a lot from the success of email campaigns, and have poured extensive resources into email marketing this time around. Well, most of them have. Donald Trump has not, and it’s showing. As AppBoy writes:
Last month, following media reports that Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, had fallen significantly behind his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, in fundraising, the Trump campaign sent out its first email soliciting donations. Now, normally there would be nothing notable about a political campaign using email to ask its supporters for donation: it happens all the time. But the way that the Trump campaign handled that first fundraising email was so problematic that it’s spurred multiple complaints to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and an international incident involving legislators in at least five countries.
Ouch. Talk about a disaster. Where did he go wrong? More importantly, how can businesses avoid making the same mistakes? Here’s the low down.