The presidential campaign has been a depressing and blunderous state of affairs. Not that that seems to have put anyone off, however: Paddy Power has just slashed the odds on a Donald Trump presidency.
If Clinton loses, it won’t be for lack of ideas. Where Trump mostly eschewed the traditional campaign model – focusing instead on pedalling a single-minded message to the disenfranchised working classes – the Clinton administration and its agencies have demonstrated strong creative and strategic thinking throughout.
I’ve listed my highlights below, but each success here comes loaded with a question in the face of potential defeat: what’s creativity worth if it can’t sell?
The H logo
Everyone is a graphic design pundit these days – just think back to furore over Uber and Instagram’s redesigned logos. Clinton too faced a barrage of criticism when her team unveiled the red, white and blue ‘H’, with its rightward facing arrow. Commentators tried to interpret meaning from it (does it signal a shift to the political right?), the Internet photoshopped it and everyone else dismissed it as ugly.
More than a year on, however, the H has passed the test. Look how well it works as a customisable social media avatar (the arrow handily pointing towards the messages) and how well it lends itself to other forms, like the donate button. It’s become a graphic identity.
Moments from Michelle Obama’s speech
Credit here, of course, belongs to Michelle Obama and her scriptwriters. By turning the best bits of that speech into an ad, the Clinton campaign has created one of the best political videos ever.
After seeing someone joke on Twitter that he’d donate to Hillary every time Donald Trump tweeted, Clinton’s digital strategist created ‘Troll Trump’: an auto donation tool that lets supporters contribute every time Trump is active on social media. When life gives you lemons…
This powerfully simple spot places children in front of Trump clips, asking ‘what kind of example are we setting?’ This is creative judo at it’s best: using Trump’s own strength and words against him.
Donald Trump is just a soft-handed boss
This final clip comes from Steelworkers and not the Clinton administration, but deserves a mention nonetheless. Trump’s hands have oft been ridiculed, but this USW member avoids playground taunts. Well argued, appealing rationally and emotionally against a Trump presidency.