Seeing Red… And Blue, In Your Inbox



Whether you like it or not, you’ve been involved in the 2016 election cycle. Front runners have scored numerous headlines that discuss their communications spending – primarily on expensive television and digital campaigns – but their email marketing strategies have received little attention in the media circus.

A recent DMNews.com article analyzes Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump’s email marketing efforts, and the results may be surprising. Looking at a short period from September 5 through September 16, an eDataSource study found that Hillary Clinton’s total send volume was nearly eight times that of Donald Trump’s. The volume difference doesn’t end there – Clinton sent 153 million messages from HillaryClinton.com, while Trump only hit send on 19.2 million from DonaldTrump.com.

Trump was able to leverage other Republican domains to email audiences across the country, primarily to avoid spam issues. Using ChrisChristie.com, Trump was able to send an additional 196,000 emails. From GOPTeam.gop (is this address wrong? Can’t find it), he sent 42.1 million. Clinton’s inbox range falls between 84% and 88%, while Trump’s range is much more variable, delivering to 59% to 95% of inboxes.

What are most important were the read rates. As you know, engagement with your email campaigns remains the holy grail of email marketing. DonaldTrump.com took the top prize at 17%, while HillaryClinton.com had read rates of 15%. Why the difference? Many factors come into play – audience demographics, content anticipation, and general delivery circumstance are all variables.

While email marketing is seemingly low priority for these candidates, they often rely on e-communication for grassroots campaign funding. Earlier this year, Clinton spokesperson Josh Schwerin said that 50 percent of the money the campaign has raised in February and March has come from what they call "online grassroots donations,” in part as a result of email marketing ‘call to actions’. Despite a low profile, it seems that email marketing will play an important role in the campaign for the White House come November.

ResponseGenius has worked with fundraisers for political candidates, social causes and health-related associations. If you are in the fundraising arena, we’d love to talk with you on how you could improve your email marketing success.