The term “branding” is a business term used by Marketing executives that describes the act of “Owning a word in a consumer’s mind.” A primary example of this would be the word “luxury.” The second an individual hears the word luxury, Mercedes almost always comes to mind and this is because Mercedes marketing people intended it to be that way. Mercedes now owns the word “Luxury” in the consumer’s mind, a prime example of strategic marketing. Xerox became so branded as the number one copy machine, for years people would say, “Xerox this.” How many times do you hear someone say, “Grab me a Kleenex,” despite that not all tissues are made by the famous tissue brand? The reason why I am lecturing my readers here on the marketing strategies of branding, is because I want to explain how Donald Trump single-handedly used this strategy to win the nomination and how the media is using it also to skew popular opinion.
In the very beginning, when most of America thought trump’s candidacy was an utter joke, Trump was up against 16 other candidates. Instead of focusing on all of them, he focused on the most popular. Jeb Bush, coming from one of the most prominent political families in the United States, was his first target. Jeb Bush, along with his powerful last name, was supposed to represent “Strength.” The power of his bloodline and political background made him the “strongest” candidate. Immediately, during the early debates, Trump continuously (and on purpose) labeled Jeb, “Weak Jeb.” Trump called Jeb “weak” so often, that without people realizing it, he was Branding Jeb as “Weak” in our minds. Quite the strategic maneuver, considering that Jeb’s whole campaign philosophy was running on the idea that he was the “Strongest” candidate. By Branding Jeb Bush the exact opposite of what he wanted to be seen as, Trump successfully ruined his credibility almost instantaneously. It would be like if I went on National television and just kept saying, “junk Mercedes” over and over again. The only difference being it could never work with Mercedes because they are already well established. However, if I were to try the same method on an up and coming car manufacturer that hasn’t successfully branded themselves yet, than it most likely would ruin their image before they had one.
With Trumps competition spending hundreds of millions of dollars on advertisements, all Trump had to do was say some controversial things that he knew the media would bite on. A couple comments were made about women, Mexicans and Muslims that immediately had the media in a frenzy. Once the media bought into trump’s method hook, line and sinker, he was able to use them to brand his opponents. While the other candidates were throwing money at ad campaigns, Trump was getting hundreds of millions of dollars in free publicity.
After eliminating his first competitor, Trump when at Ted Cruz. Ted has a strong religious background. Ted Cruz is so engulfed in the Evangelical Christian world, it was integral for him to win their votes by being the absolute pillar of honesty. Trump, immediately began labeling Ted, “lying Ted.” In fact, Trump did this so often, thousands of people outside of a Cruz rally were chanting it. Just like in the case of Jeb, print media kept publishing it, Social Media began hash-tagging it and broadcast media kept repeating it. Before long, Cruz was successfully branded by Trump as a liar, the exact opposite of what Cruz’ entire platform was running on. Trump also did this technique to Marco Rubio, branding Rubio as “little Marco.” The term “Little” raised unconscious questions about his age and experience. Age and experience were the last things Marco wanted his voters to think about.
After winning the Republican nomination, Trump turned his attention toward branding Hillary Clinton. Hillary has been building a huge democratic following over the last twenty years, by selling herself as the “moral” candidate. Hillary is supposed to be the leading activist on fighting for the Black community, the LGBT community, the Poor, women’s rights and etc. Hillary’s moral platform is what prompted Trump to use the word “crooked” when describing her. By successfully branding Hillary “crooked,” Trump is attempting to ruin her image like he did his latest Republican challengers. The difficulty here is that unlike Trump’s Republican competition, Hillary is already well branded. Like, Mercedes. It is because of how well established Hillary is, why it absolutely astonishes me that she is constantly on the defensive. If someone came out saying, “junk Mercedes,” rest assured that Mercedes wouldn’t even respond.
Trump is running his entire campaign on the fact that he is anti-establishment. In some cases this is true, and in some cases this is not. Trump has never been a politician and in this regard, it is true that he isn’t a part of the political establishment. However, Trump has billions of dollars in equity because he is very much apart of the business and financial establishment. One could argue, the business and financial sectors have corrupted our government for decades. Am I saying trump is corrupt? No. I have no idea if he is or he isn’t. What I do know, is that Hillary’s campaign manager should be fired and here’s why.
President Barrack Obama made a comment the other day in a speech where he alluded to how silly it is people want a politician that’s never done it before. He made some analogy to a person getting surgery and hoping the surgeon has never done surgery before. A proper argument that Hillary should be arguing. Instead, Hillary is fighting back against Trump’s anti-establishment card by saying, “I’m a woman running for president. It doesn’t get more anti-establishment than that.” Wrong, Hillary! You were a president’s wife, a senator, a presidential candidate and a Secretary of State. You have spent 20 years in Washington. Use your experience to your advantage, rather than your gender.
Trump’s gravest mistake, and the main thing that bothers me about him, is how unapologetic he is. Trump acts as if he has never made a mistake in his life, everything he says is right, everything he does is the right thing to do and makes no apologies for anything. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a man’s man. I appreciate that in a guy, not so much in a president.
If there is anything I can say for certain, it’s that American voters have a tough choice to make. You have some people saying, “I know Hillary is a liar, a criminal and a special interest group puppet, but she has experience and she doesn’t offend me. It’s better than voting for that racist.” On the other side people are saying, “I know Trump is offensive, brutish, Misogynistic and inexperienced, but he says what’s on his mind and doesn’t lie, like Hillary. It’s better than voting for that criminal.” Nobody is actually talking about the issues.
Really? Is anybody paying attention to just how fucked up this is? Bernie Sanders was a remarkable man whom I have been a fan of for 10 years. Bernie was the only politician who tried to bring those corrupt bankers to justice during the 04’ crash. Though I don’t agree with all of his views, I think he would’ve made a good president, in that he isn’t a brutish, misogynistic, inexperienced, offensive, liar, criminal, special interest group puppet. Bernie isn’t in the running for two reasons. One, because it’s been proven Hillary rigged the election against him, and two, because Bernie made a backstage deal. All and all, we had 3 serious candidates this election and every single one of them have been filled with disappointment. The entire thing has been a joke. A socialist, a racist, and a criminal walk into a bar.
To the democrats, everything bad said about Trump is true and everything bad said about Hillary is the media. To the Republicans, everything bad said about Hillary is true and everything bad said about Trump is the media. Has it occurred to anybody that maybe the media is lying about both of them? Even worse, maybe the media is telling the truth about both of them. Maybe the media has an agenda. The media brands people too folks, not just Trump. In fact, I think I heard the word “Racist” used so much in regards to Trump that every time I hear the word for the next ten years, he will be the first thing I think of. Now, that’s branding.
Mercedes could put out the worst car ever and those who could afford one would run right out and buy one because it’s Mercedes. Coke could put piss in a can and we’d drink it because it was Coke. No matter who you vote for, just make sure that you make your decision based on the taste, and not the brand on the can.