Point of Differentiation: NOT Being Politically Correct

If you are competing in a crowded market space, it is essential to clearly differentiate your product. This is especially true if you are entering into a category that is already dominated by a few brands (e.g., Coke or Pepsi) or has a wide variety of options to choose from (e.g., the cracker aisle). The same marketing foundational elements apply to the Presidential race:  build and maintain a unique value proposition that is your cornerstone; define your ideal target audience, have a clear vision and mission to keep you focused, and build a strong brand for starters.

So how is the Trump campaign doing building its marketing foundation?

Value Proposition:  His unique offering centers on NOT being politically correct. He offers proven success in business and trade, decisiveness, leadership, decision-making, action and change. There is no other candidate that has his same offering positioning.  Grade – A. 

Target Audience: He is appealing to those who are sick of the Washington insiders; who want America to lead from the front again, who want to protect the border, and targets his message to veterans. I think the jury is out as to if he will continue to appeal to women in the coming months after his Megyn Kelly comments. And then there is his recent silly comment about Heidi Klum. (Great response Heidi) Personally I feel he will continue to lose the female vote. Grade – A. He is winning big so his message is resonating with a large group, but stayed tuned.

Tagline:  Make American Great Again. Excellent.  On message; resonating with his audience, memorable and relevant.  Grade – A+.

donald%20trump%20make%20america%20great

 

Brand:  Patriotic colors – check! Clear branding – check! Words that are commonly associated with him: abrasive, brash, rich, arrogant, NOT politically correct, smart, savvy, egotistical. Not all positive, but this is his brand. He is not in this race to be liked. He has built incredible brand awareness. He is constantly in the news.  Name recognition is sky rocketing. He is bigger than life and has nothing to lose. He is funding his own campaign.  He is unlike any other candidate and sets himself clearly from the Republicans despite the crowded field. Grade – A  with reservations.

A few concerns about Trump’s marketing foundation and whether it will hold up:

  1. The rude factor.  Not being politically correct is one thing, but going too far is rude and offensive.  I think the rude factor is a real risk that could weaken the foundation. We saw glimpses of it with his Rosie O’Donnell quip; his whining that Megyn Kelly’s line of questioning about women was unfair and then making totally inappropriate comments about her being emotional and hormonal.
  2. Being a Bully is not presidential. Trump has real value to offer the American people.  Can he focus on his value proposition without being a bully? Can he refrain from attacking when feeling attacked and take the high road? I see this as a real risk that could undermine his clear value proposition, tarnish his brand and lessen his appeal to his target audience. It seems like it is in his DNA to strike back when feeling cornered.  Not a highly desirable presidential trait.
  3. Does his brand include building a team or being another egotistical president?  We lack a team player now. Our current president is divisive and largely focused on building his own legacy. Can The Donald build a team environment in Washington or will there not be enough room for his ego?

Time will tell if the Trump marketing foundation will continue to solidity or implode with a rant of political incorrectness and insults. Whatever happens, he has clearly built his unique positioning and the coming months will not be dull! Whether you like him or detest him, he is unique and we can all learn some pointers to apply to your company’s marketing foundation to differentiate yourself when competing in a crowded space.

 

 

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One Response to “Point of Differentiation: NOT Being Politically Correct”

  1. Rob Jewett Says:

    What surprising topic to use as a demonstration of marketing fundamentals! Your post was a great eye-opener. I appreciate your ability to find such lessons in everyday life, outside the meeting rooms.

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