Branding lessons from the 2016 presidential campaigns
Unless you have been living in a cave for the past few months, you know that the presidential primaries are in full swing. Amidst the political posturing, rhetoric and endless speeches, the candidates utilize many of the fundamentals of branding. Maybe thinking of them in this way will make the next few months a little more interesting!
Communicate a unique personality
Think about the differences in this year’s crop of candidates: each one’s personality is clearly defined, unique and consistent. This clarity and consistency draws in like-minded voters and makes them loyal. Brands have personalities that command loyalty, too. Think of Southwest Airlines (fun) and Target (hip).
Develop a clear messaging platform
A key tenet of your brand’s strategy is a clear message that the target audience connects with because they see how it benefits them. The candidates that are still in the running deliver a clear message (over, and over, and over…) that they hope voters understand and support. Candidates who are constantly shifting their views, or are not concise and confident with their message, typically do not last long. Neither will brands.
Connect with emotion
The leading candidates have mastered the art of knowing exactly what to say to tap into voters’ emotions on important issues. They know the hot-button issues. Just like voters, consumers buy into brands that they connect with emotionally. Think of strong brands and how fiercely loyal people can be (Blue Bell anyone?).
Create a dialogue
Marketing a product, or a person, is not a one-way conversation. The candidates know that making a personal connection with voters is often more important than their ads. Listening and responding to customers is the personal connection and two-way communication that is important for products and services as well.
The lessons from the candidates
You have to admit it’s an interesting campaign season, and it is fascinating to see how the candidates position and strengthen their individual brands. Having a unique personality, a clear and consistent message, and a personal relationship with your customers — and reaching them through all media — are signs of good thinking, and are all key to maintaining and improving your brand.
At Mason Baronet, building influential brands is our priority. Before hitting the next advertising campaign trail, let us help you solidify your brand’s voice. Together, we can revitalize your brand and establish a sound foundation for long-term advocacy.