Slogan-stealing

Barack Obama has built his presidential candidacy bid on the theme of “Change.” It has become a slogan, a piece of common political parlance in this season, which, from a marketing perspective, is a great accomplishment. While you’d like to have a bunch of people who can articulately explain what they’d like to see by way of “change,” their votes count just as much as those who can only say that they want something different than the status quo, without being able to explain or defend what a candidate actually stands for.

The McCain ticket understands this, and they want to steal the thunder by saying that they (the “outsiders,” the “mavericks,” the proven agents of actual change in the past) are the real candidates representing change.

And, of course, the Obama campaign is doing everything they can to tie McCain/Palin to the 8 years of the prior administration. While McCain/Palin now tries to paint Obama/Biden into the corner of representing the failed policies of a do-nothing Congress.

I think Obama will be able to maintain the veneer of being the primary change agent in this election, because he’s owned the message longer, and tapped deeply into voter dissatisfaction. However, the Republicans are skillfully chipping away at this brand image. Will Obama keep the change? It’ll be an interesting couple of months coming up, in this branding warfare about who truly represents change!

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