Is US Presidential Campaign All About Politics?

election-2016                                                                             ( Daily Post ,2015)

The United States Presidential Election Campaign is in its last phase and the world can’t wait to see who will emerge as the 45th President  and successor to the present President Obama. The Democratic Party  Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton with her legacy was definitely the one people thought would win The White House and become the first female American President. But those odds changed dramatically when Donald Trump was nominated as her competitor by the Republican Party. No one saw it coming and it took political pundits, marketing experts and public relations experts by surprise. The journey of Trump from a well-known celebrity and businessman to the Presidential candidate is a fascinating one indeed. But how marketing metrics paves the way for these candidates to win over the voters  is an incredible story in itself. It is a proof that “big data” or “marketing metrics”  plays a crucial role in attaining success, not just for multinational companies and major brands but also for individuals and political parties(Ridder 2015).

Great marketing does not look like marketing at all….

clinton-vs-trump                                                                               (MGN,2016)

Presidential campaign is not just politics. It is one of the most followed and fascinating marketing and sales campaign in the world. And like any other campaigns there are numerous marketing strategies that are employed to endorse the product – the “Presidential candidate” to the  “American voting consumers”. Marketing metrics not only helps in understanding how successful the campaign is, but also plays an important role in defining the segmentation and positioning strategies adopted  (Zahay & Griffin 2010). The dashboard of the Republican and Democratic candidates will show us many key metrics which can provide vital information that can be utilized to achieve a competitive advantage(Arslanagic-Kalajdzic, Zabkar & Pfajfar 2014).Behind every presidential candidature is a group of efficient analysts who identify and gauge the key metrics that defines success(Ambler 2000).Some of the key marketing metrics tracked are the Financial Metrics , Behavioural Metrics, Memory & Mental Metrics, Marketing Activity Metrics and Customer Profile Metrics.

Marketing Dashboard: Monitoring metrics in Real-time

Trump’s campaign is one of the most cost-effective presidential campaigns that the world has seen . The data on the marketing spends or Dollars invested in Political Campaigns can be calculated from news reports on total money raised by each candidate as filed with the Federal Election Commission. This will help analysts in calculating the Return on Investment, a key financial metric for the campaign that aids in deciding on how to allocate the funds in the most efficient way (Rockland 2005). The Customer Referral Value {CRV} or the word of mouth referrals will definitely boost the campaign(Jackson 2010).

The marketing metrics with regard to social media including social sentiments for each candidate and social mentions can be tracked using monitoring tools like and Mention API . The data like the number of views or visits , number of followers or tags and volume of coverage by media  can help understand  whether the campaign has an effective reach and engagement with the citizens(Spiller & Tuten 2015) .Trump again has emerged as the clear winner over Hillary in the social media platform.  This along with the defection rate will be a key indicator for  behavioural metrics.

us elections social media trump leading                                                               (Quintly,2016)

The mental and memory metrics like brand awareness and associations with brand image can also be assessed using the social media platforms(Bîja & Balaş 2014). By tracking the  conversion rate like the time taken by an online contact to become a donor , the reach and retention rates can be calculated(McDowell, Wilson & JrKile 2016).

The number of delegates each candidate has won is a crucial indicator of getting nominated as the presidential candidate which is an important measure for marketing activity metrics. This again can be calculated from sources like Wall Street Journal which tracks the delegates count.

Looking at Trump in the context of a new product development, customer profile metrics definitely has made a positive impact in creating an effective public relations strategy (Hung 2012) .Customer profile metrics like the States left to vote is again an important determinant for predicting victory . This helps in target marketing and identifying potential voters.

Integration is the key

republican-dashboard                                                                        ( Geckoboard, 2016)

With an overflow of information and  data available , an integrated dashboard that identifies the key metrics related to the product is important(Ambler & Roberts 2008). Like in the presidential campaign, it is not just the financial metrics or a silo mentality alone that matters. In fact for an efficient assessment of market performance the critical factor is a holistic evaluation of multiple aggregates of optimizable metrics (‘Managaing the Marketing Metrics Portfolio’  2011).The pre and post-campaign metrics will not only help to evaluate the candidate’s performance but also give a fair and equitable comparison in relation to the competitor(Solcansky, Sychrova & Milichovsky 2011). Ultimately all the metrics associated with the marketing mix will help in developing a long term brand equity, that is vital for the future Commander-In-Chief of the most powerful nation in the world(Ambler, Kokkinaki & Puntoni 2004).


Ambler, T 2000, ‘Marketing Metrics’, Business Strategy Review, vol. 11, no. 2, p. 59.

Ambler, T, Kokkinaki, F & Puntoni, S 2004, ‘Assessing Marketing Performance: Reasons for Metrics Selection’, Journal of Marketing Management, vol. 20, no. 3-4, pp. 475-98.

Ambler, T & Roberts, JH 2008, ‘Assessing marketing performance: don’t settle for a silver metric’, Journal of Marketing Management, vol. 24, no. 7-8, pp. 733-50.

Arslanagic-Kalajdzic, M, Zabkar, V & Pfajfar, G 2014, ‘CONCEPTUALISING MARKETING ACCOUNTABILITY: BIBLIOMETRIC CO-CITATION ANALYSIS’, Conference Proceedings: International Conference of the Faculty of Economics Sarajevo (ICES), pp. 225-.

Bîja, M & Balaş, R 2014, ‘Social Media Marketing to Increase Brand Awareness’, Journal of Economics & Business Research, vol. 20, no. 2, pp. 155-64.

Hung, L-P 2012, ‘Discovering patterns of online purchasing behaviour and a new-product-launch strategy’, Expert Systems, vol. 29, no. 4, pp. 411-25.

Jackson, SE 2010, ‘Nudge your way to higher value’, Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 31, no. 6, pp. 46-8.

‘Managaing the Marketing Metrics Portfolio’,  2011, Marketing Management, vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 16-21.

McDowell, WC, Wilson, RC & JrKile, CO 2016, ‘An examination of retail website design and conversion rate’, Journal of Business Research, vol. 69, no. 11, pp. 4837-42.

Ridder, R 2015, ‘Some New and Old Rules for 2016 Presidential Campaigns’, Journal of Political Marketing, vol. 14, no. 3, pp. 223-8.

Rockland, DB 2005, ‘Asked to calculate ROI?’, Public Relations Tactics, vol. 12, no. 7, pp. 19-21.

Solcansky, M, Sychrova, L & Milichovsky, F 2011, ‘MARKETING EFFECTIVENESS BY WAY OF METRICS’, Economics & Management, vol. 16, pp. 1323-8.

Spiller, L & Tuten, T 2015, ‘Integrating Metrics Across the Marketing Curriculum’, Journal of Marketing Education, vol. 37, no. 2, pp. 114-26.

Zahay, D & Griffin, A 2010, ‘Marketing strategy selection, marketing metrics, and firm performance’, Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 84-93.



2 thoughts on “Is US Presidential Campaign All About Politics?

  1. Great topic! One of the most talked-about events around the world. It is great to read examples of how Marketing applies to it ALL, not just FMCG or global manufacturers…
    I specially liked your subheading: ‘Great marketing does not look like marketing at all…’

    Liked by 1 person

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