Hillary Clinton had an obvious advantage over Trump in two aspects, the money and the workforce at her disposal. It was not unexpected to see her spend more than double of what Donald Trump spent on his presidential campaigns. Clinton’s digital campaign was backed by several millions of dollars while Trump did not believe much in ads.
Clinton tried to target the youth through Facebook and other social media. Her hundred plus strong team aggressively handled the social media campaign. While Clinton was spending her money on digital campaigns, Trump took to the traditional mediums. This does not mean that he did not use any social media. Instead, he was spending categorically. He hardly spent any money in states where Clinton had spent a fortune. While he only spent in those states where he had a majority.
Clinton tried to target the youth through Facebook and other social media.
$1500 Trump Website Generated $90Million Campaign Fund
Trump’s digital director, Brad Parscale, was experienced and a close confidant of Trump. When he was hired for creating a website for Trump’s presidential campaign, he demanded only $1500. Later, through hard work and smart use of resources, he ended up earning $90 million. Unlike Clinton, Trump did not set out to hire a large team of professionals to manage his campaign. He had a small team that comprised of close friends and people who had been working with him for a long time. This resulted in substantial efforts by them on a personal level.
Trump’s victory without spending the big buck can be credited to the fact that he used data very efficiently. He did not go about spending money in every state. He never wanted to target the masses. His team and he knew that for winning only a concentrated effort on a specific section of the society was enough. To do that he did not have to spend much, but he achieved his target.
Using Data Efficiently
By using the available data, he knew which areas and sections to target. This did the trick. While Clinton’s efforts were distributed and Parscale says that they had to work long hours and they had to learn many skills to handle the campaign appropriately. The team used to go through around 50,000 to 60,000 ads daily and screen them for their efficiency. They minutely went through every ad and customised it to reach out to voters as they had to maximise the effects. They tailored every aspect of those ads so that they had the desired results. Due to these persistent efforts the digital campaign was a huge success without any huge investment.
Parscale says that they had to work long hours and they had to learn many skills to handle the campaign appropriately.
$39Million on TV Ads, $29Million on Digital Campaign
Regarding spending, Trump spent close to $39 million to air ads on TV and another $29 million on Parscale’s firm for consultation and for handling the digital campaign. Another payment was for a TV closing ad of two minutes that depicted Trump and the photos of his rallies. That ad was effective, according to Parscale. All these amounts look paltry when compared to Clinton’s spending on digital campaigning. She spent nearly $140 million on these campaigns. She took to Facebook and several other social media sites and TV too.
$66Million Out Of Trump’s Pocket
While Clinton’s fundraisings were filling the campaign’s accounts, Trump had to spend $66 million from his pocket. The business-minded Trump was able to squeeze out the maximum benefit from his available funds. He had an advantage over Clinton in this matter.
The minor expenditure by Trump also is due to his prior publicity. He did not need to spend so much on TV commercials to popularise himself. While Clinton had wealthy backings, Trump had his popularity and his business-oriented thinking.
The End Result
Overall, Trump made calculated moves to ensure that his investments bore fruit while Clinton was spending on every available resources and opportunity. Maybe if she had not faced any troubles like the leak, during the election, she might have gone easy on the promotions. Trump’s campaigns were better managed, and he knew what he had to do to win. He was clear on his objective, and all these factors contributed to his low levels of expenditure and a better digital campaign than his opponents.