Be the First to Know

Within the next 48 hours, Barack Obama will announce to the world his running mate…via email! He announced this unusual departure from protocol through an email to his existing base, and a display campaign that has blanketed the web for the past 10 days. The announcement took more than a few by surprise, but Mr. Obama is a savvy email marketer, and I like the strategy.


The display campaign links through to a landing page where Obama’s team collects email, first name, last name and zip. An optional field for cell phone is also included—they’ll text you the veep announcement too.

I first wrote of the Obama campaign’s prowess in acquiring email addresses back in April (read Obama Spending Money on Search, But Making Money on Email), and they have certainly extended their strategy with this newest effort. The campaign is undoubtedly collecting hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of addresses through this initiative—and as was made abundantly clear in the primary, they are good at monetizing their list.

Have you leveraged a similar ‘be the first to know’ strategy in your business to engage users through email? If so, please share.

—Nicholas Einstein of Datran Media

2 thoughts on “Be the First to Know

  1. This campaign could have definitely been executed better. While some people have complained about the 3am launch, but my wife didn’t receive her "first to know" email until 11am, well after the news was all over the place.

  2. The "first to know" strategy is great for collecting opt-ins, but those who opted in were not the first to know. Watching the news on CNN, I asked a few friends who had signed up for text alerts if they already knew and they all said "NO!"

    Luckily the Obama campaign does not need to build a strong email reputation. They are done campaigning in 3 months…

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