I get one or two emails a day from Trump or one of his friends. They are clearly designed for people who don’t use their brains on a regular basis.
Take a look at the example below. I got on this list because I answered a “survey,” and I stayed on it because I’m curious . . . I’ve never contributed a dime to Trump’s campaign. But I’m apparently one of his most prominent supporters:
Here we go
From: DonaldJTrump.com <firstname.lastname@example.org>
135 DAYS UNTIL ELECTION DAY
I am so proud to be your President.
Since the very day that I announced my Presidential Campaign, I promised you that I would always put America FIRST with every decision I make (something the Democrats don’t know how to do).
Now, we’re only 135 days out from what will be the most historic Election in our Nation’s history, and, unlike past presidents, I have kept my promise to you.
We are one day closer to November 3rd, and I need to know that you’re still in this fight with me.
I’ve asked my team to print and frame the Presidential Donor List made up of the first 150 Patriots who choose to step up at this critical time. This list will proudly hang in my office, and I’ll be disappointed if I don’t see your name on there.
I’m going to review the Presidential Donor List, and I want to see that Josh from Massachusetts gave to show your dedicated support.
There’s still time left to contribute to get on the list, but you have to act IMMEDIATELY. You’ve never let me down before, Josh, and I know you won’t start now.
This offer is only available to my best supporters. Most of the spots are already full, and now I’m waiting on you, Josh.
Donald J. Trump
President of the United States
P.S. Remember, this email isn’t for everyone. You’re only receiving it because you’ve been such a trusted supporter. I want to see your name on the Presidential Donor List my team frames for my office. Contribute NOW. >>
I have a few questions, because I am not a moron.
- Is there really a donor list that hangs in his office? (You mean the Oval Office?) Given the number of similar appeals, that could be a lot of framed lists. Not buying it.
- Are there really 17 slots remaining? I know they send this to tens of millions of people. Are they all getting the same message about 17 slots remaining?
- Why do you say I’ve never let you down before when I’ve never contributed anything and have criticized you publicly on many occasions?
- Why do you say this email is only available to your best supporters and then send it to me, one of your biggest critics? You have no idea who your supporters are, do you?
Anyone with the smallest iota of critical thinking and logic knows this is made up crap. In other emails, Trump has told me that he will match my contribution 500% (from what source?), and that he looked up my donor file and was surprised to see my contribution was missing (I have a donor file? And Trump is looking at it?).
I received similar emails from Eric Trump and Lara Trump. Eric’s email, sent from the same email address as the one “from” Trump, says “I’m sending my father an updated list tomorrow of the donors who helped CRUSH our End-of-Month Goal and I want him to see YOUR name at the very top.” If my name is at the top, what about the other million people who respond to this appeal? Will their names be at the top, too? Eric, will you really send a donor list, or is that fake, too?
The Democrats are using similar tactics
I’d like to tell you that the emails from Democrats don’t treat me as an idiot. I wish I could.
Sign his card?
From: Obama Birthday Alert (<email@example.com>)
This is obviously just a transparent ploy to get me onto another mailing list — the link goes to a sign-up form. Obama’s not going to see my name. But the Democrats have flashing buttons . . . cool.
Maybe you like this one better:
Biden is missing one key endorsement. Read more >>
From: Democratic Endorsement Update <firstname.lastname@example.org>
JoshDGA, dozens of top Democrats are on Joe Biden’s team. He’s received endorsements from all of these key leaders:
➤ Barack Obama
➤ Al Gore
➤ Hillary Clinton
➤ John Kerry
➤ Bernie Sanders
➤ Elizabeth Warren
➤ Kamala Harris
➤ PLUS! Stacey Abrams
➤ AND 14 Democratic governors
But he’s missing one HUGE endorsement – yours, JoshDGA!
I’m not a top Democrat. And I’m not buying that they need my answer and 9 more from my Zip code to develop critical insight. It’s just a way to get me to feel involved.
The poll it links to (it’s not just one question) has insightful questions like this:
And of course that’s followed by a solicitation for a contribution.
That’s not a poll, it’s money-grab.
I also get at least one email a day from Democrats explaining that Trump is about to abolish the post office.
Maybe you believe that the Republican emails have more lies and deception than the Democratic ones do. Is that really the point?
Or is the point that, in the absence of any enforcement, both parties treat us like morons? I’m sure these emails work. I’m also sure they create more partisan distrust than enlightenment.
What part of the government regulates this crap? Are campaigns free from truth in advertising laws? Or would any prosecution just be seen as partisan and turn into another front in the culture war?
I know the Republicans will go lower. I know the Democrats will go lower. I know these mailing lists will be used to stir up dissent if the election is close. And that scares the crap out of me.
Just answer one thing — is this where the rest of email marketing is going, or can we possibly pull ourselves back out of the gutter on this?