Monday, March 2, 2009

Now the brand is the candidate

Familiar meme: "a brand is a story." But that doesn't mean a fiction: it means a narrative shaped by real qualities and events, even those that mar an ideal image. It's not as simple (or as complex) as making up the perfect story from scratch and then imposing it on a passive public.

Is this what political branding can teach corporate branding today? Admit you are a personality, with acceptable flaws, in the interest of the larger good you can do (Kennedy). Be willing to shape brand messages more quickly, like a political campaign with a war room mentality, always primed to respond to events (Clinton). Use the web to build your own constituency (Obama).

The 1960s and 70s saw the effective application of corporate media and marketing principles to political candidates and campaigns. Now the ideas are flowing in the opposite direction.

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