Day 435: 7/28/20

EDIT: This post was written when Trump’s emails were hiding in Spam. Here is the correct breakdown of this day’s emails.

Back to emails as usual from Joe Biden.


For all new readers: Welcome! I am currently on the mailing lists of Joe Biden and Donald Trump, though I have previously been on the mailing lists of 28 Democratic candidates! This blog breaks down recent emails with charts and excerpts. If you already know all of this, feel free to skip to the next chart!

It took some time for the Trump emails to kick in, so I started officially tracking his list on July 7. I have been tracking Biden’s for longer, but I will start comparing them as of July 7. All of these emails are going to a new email, and I have not donated, filled out surveys, signed petitions, or otherwise interacted with either candidate’s emails.

The rules I try to follow for the various categories are laid out in The Framework.

That number creeps higher.

Joe Biden sent out his usual 3 emails on Tuesday.

We ARE nearing the end of the month

All of Biden’s emails were focused on bringing in money.

In fact, all three emails had the same theme: Obama.

And yet there was a difference…

As always, when Obama sends an email for Biden, the email pattern goes like this:

  1. Obama says something
  2. Biden agrees with Obama’s email earlier that day.
  3. The campaign staff checks to make sure I didn’t miss Obama’s email

Except… the message gets diluted with each additional email.

When I receive an email and enter it into my spreadsheet, I have a column where I write a short summary of the email. Here’s what I wrote for Obama’s:

When times are tough, we don’t give up, we get up. Also, remember the tan suit? It totally looked good.

Obama’s email was a long message talking about how we’re living through incredible challenges, but Biden is gearing up for a battle for the soul of the nation. He asked for a donation, and he finished with a P.S. about remembering when wearing a tan suit was the scandal du jour (and he still thinks it looked good).

Seung Min Kim on Twitter: "McConnell is wearing a tan suit today"
Mr. President, I think that tan suit looks really… wait, wrong suit.
China bribes Trump with $500 Million. Still the tan suit is the ...
As I was saying, Mr. President, you rocked that suit.

Obama finished his email on a strong, powerful note.

This is how you ask for money.

Biden followed it up with… well, he had a strong start.

You lost me with the second paragraph.

Where Obama was empowering the readers to band together to restore our country, Biden was simply grateful for Obama’s support and our future support.

And his campaign staff?

That should NOT have been the takeaway. I don’t care how much money Biden raises. I care that Biden restores our country. The message I took from Obama was that America doesn’t give up. The message they are pushing on me from Obama is that Biden needs money.

Where is the hope in that!? Where is the inspiration? Where is the encouragement?

I wrote a two-sentence summary of Obama’s email. At no point did I mention the fundraising goal, because that’s not what I, a voter, care about. That’s not at all part of the Biden story.

But it’s all about the Biden emails.

However, speaking about Biden’s story…

Humans are drawn to stories. Stories inspire us and move us. Stories make it easier for us to share information. We engage with stories. That’s something I’ve been trying to say all along with this blog. It’s not enough to tell me I need to give money. You need to tell me why.

You need to tell me the story.

There’s a new group of political consultants in the arena, a trio of incredibly talented women who formed Triptych Strategies and announced it yesterday. They seem to be focused on values and storytelling, which already had me excited, but then I saw this on their website:

I was immediately interested.

I tweeted that I was interested in this company and got a reply from one of the founders.


No matter what else comes out of this blog, I declare my efforts here a success. All I wanted to do with But Their Emails! was show that there was a difference between good and bad political emails, and that good ones could be successful and needed to be embraced.

I can’t wait to see the future of political emails.

Biden has sent nearly one email for every year of his life since 7/7/20.

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