The Politics of Brand
The U.S presidential election is imminent and, not surprisingly, politics are dominating everyone’s conversations. Last week a work colleague and I had an on-going discussion of whether brands have political connotations.
We started with an observation about cars in the office parking lot: more Republicans own BMW’s while more Democrats own Jeeps. Cars turned into sports: Democrats prefer football while Republicans prefer baseball. We tried to find a pattern with fast food restaurants but couldn’t.
My colleague then speculated that logo color might reveal something about political leanings. Coca-Cola, Verizon, and Oracle would all be considered Republican while Pepsi, AT&T, and SAP would be Democratic. Chick-fil-A’s red logo seems to be consistent with their recent political controversy.
While it’s an intriguing notion, the theory didn’t stand up to a little on-line sleuthing. The neuro-insight research firm Buyology studied consumers’ non-conscious connections to brands and discovered variations by political affiliation:
|Most Desired Car||Jeep||BMW|
|Most Desired Electronics||Sony||Sharp|
|Most Desired Insurance||Progressive||Allstate|
|Most Desired Restaurant||Wendy’s||Subway|
|Most Desired Coffee Shop||Starbucks||Dunkin’ Donuts|
Allstate’s blue logo disproves our theory but at least we got the cars correct.
It turns out trying to associate brands with political preferences is a popular topic. According to consumer research firm YouGov, which ranked 1,100+ brands for quality, value, and willingness to recommend, the top brands for each political party are as follows:
|Fox News Channel|
|Dawn||Johnson & Johnson|
The results seem to imply Republicans watch more TV while Democrats spend more time on-line.
Even social media has joined in. The digital agency Engage cross-referenced polling data with influence and Facebook “likes” to correlate food preference with politics. Their conclusion? “Conservatives like Cracker Barrel, while Red Bull leans left.”
I don’t know if any of this can be used to project the election winner but it’s good fun.
So readers, what do you think? Do your politics fit these brand preferences?
Follow me on twitter @jbecher.
This blog was originally posted on Manage By Walking Around.