November 6, 2008

Marketing Lessons From Barack Obama

Posted by Bizaholic | 10:25 PM | with 0 comments »

Barack Obama has created history by becoming the first black President of the United States of America. In the process, he ran an excellent campaign and re-wrote many rules of politics and marketing.

I have been closely following his campaign since last 10 months and feel that marketers can learn a lot from Obama.

Here are a few instant lessons in marketing as successfully demonstrated by Obama.
  1. Start with a good product. If you don't have a good product, marketing can't help.
  2. Differentiate your product in market and rise over clutter. Obama's political theme of hope and change was something having universal appeal and it differentiated him from the rest of candidates in the field who were running with routine election issues.
  3. Create a brand signature that resonates well with the USP of the brand. Obama's brand signature was 'Yes we can' and 'Change we can believe in'.
  4. Create a tribe around your brand who eat, breathe, sleep, and live the brand.
  5. Give the ownership of the brand to your customers. As a marketer, act like a guide and moderator but allow customers to be the real brand owners.
  6. Keep your communication consistent. Wavering on communication is a signal of weakness.
    Conventional wisdom is not sacrosanct. Dare to go against accepted rules. Rules are meant to be broken. Obama's decision to invest in marketing in traditionally Republican states forced Republicans to spread their resources across American political arena and not confine themselves to a few "battle ground states."
  7. When faced with a problem, don't shy away from acknowledging it. Fight the bull by the horn. Obama's famous speech on race demonstrated this.
  8. Focus on customer acquisition. Even in a cluttered market you can establish your brand if you find new customers in hordes. Obama's strategy to bring the youth in mainstream politics worked on this principle. He ensured addition of millions of voters by activating the politically dormant youth to participate in political process.
  9. Be present everywhere. Obama's strategy to use every marketing channel – electronic media, print media, digital media, buzz marketing, and word of mouth – to spread his message worked well to create awareness about him among all target audience.
  10. Explore full potential of PR to spread your brand message.
  11. When attacked, never get defensive. Instead go on offensive by playing to your strengths.
  12. Give the credit of your brand's success to your customers. Let them feel that the brand is their baby.
Keep visiting Bizaholic as I am planning to do an exhaustive series on 'Marketing lessons from Obama' in near future.