Except for a Joe Biden blunder here or there, or perhaps a moment or two of Mika-rage, it can be a challenge to remember that a crucial presidential election is looming. The political strategists at Trump HQ have not forgotten, though. This week they rolled out the Official Trump 2020 App, and within it lies a plethora of goodies awaiting the average Trump fan. Digital warfare is taking place on our smartphone and pads, all with the ultimate goal of relieving us of our hard-earned dollars.
Name and Cell Number, Please
Those dialed in to the 2016 campaign may remember the well-oiled Trump strategy to get out the vote on Election Day with multiple personal text messages. It was an impressive display of digi-tech prowess. Just when a potential voter was about to bag going to the polls in favor of a nice lunch at the local deli – ding, ding, ding. They could not escape the campaign’s ability to inspire people to run to their nearest polling venue to keep Mrs. Clinton from inhabiting the Oval Office.
And turn out they did.
This time around, the Trump camp took all the voter information mined during the last election and created an app. To begin navigation, you first need to fork over your name and cell phone number. Can you imagine why?
Once you are in, there is plenty to see and do. Let’s just say it leaves Mitt Romney and his ORCA platform – which crashed and burned on Election Day 2012, much like the candidate – in the dust. Under the news tab, the user finds articles about what the president is doing on any given day. These come with a prominent red “share” symbol – again, another wise move by the Trump 2020 people. The font is big as in giant, which is likely appreciated by older users, and is set up in a pleasant mix of red and blue. These color choices are no accident, as Liberty Nation’s Mark Angelides wrote and recorded recently on LN:
“We may not realize it, but the political and natural world is full of secret messages based on color and hue that are not only guiding us but purposefully so. And those who understand the special properties of colors can and do use them for their own politically charged games and intrigue.”
Atop these articles – and in bold red – is the link to sign up for a Team Trump Online event. When the user hits “register” – shazam – nothing to fill out, just a “Thank you for Registering!” note in bright blue. The smoothness of this action reveals that the techies tested and retested the user experience thoroughly. Another compelling registration element is that ubiquitous and large “share” symbol – as in share your registration with a friend – another smart move.
Everyone Loves a Contest
But the Trump app doesn’t stop there. The political strategists have set up a “point system” for the user. What do you receive for these points? Well, if you “share” your registration with a friend, you win 100 points — 5,000 gets you a $25 store discount on campaign flare, and 100,000 gets you a picture with POTUS.
While this point system might seem a bit silly, it’s quite ingenious. We know that people who donate loads of cash to campaigns always get the goodies, such as inauguration tickets and invitations to fancy dinners and balls. Using the app is a way the average John and Jill can get their hands on some goodies, too. The point system is, in a manner of speaking, very egalitarian.
At the very top of the app – and on every page – is a dollar sign in red. Bet you can’t guess what that takes you to? Could it be a chance to make a donation to the Trump campaign? However, the app developers made that symbol so small it looks more like a red “s” – something they should think about clarifying on Trump app two-point-zero. Screwing up the donation symbol is a campaign blunder of enormous magnitude.
Contrasted to the myriad tech issues suffered by Team Biden as of late, the Trump 2020 app proves to be an impressive bit of technology. One should not forget that apps are complex coding animals. Even McDonald’s Corp. and other business giants have rolled out sloppy apps so faulty they can’t even find a way to take your money.
It is perhaps a little strange that Biden did not take advice from his former partner and president, Barack Obama, who is widely credited with using this kind of data to his electoral advantage.
There is no way around the fact that the Official Trump 2020 App is a smooth and straightforward bit of technology for the average user. With a few tweaks here and there, it will serve the campaign well.
Read more from Leesa K. Donner.