Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Marketing Pro to 2016 Hopefuls: Sell Pithy Specifics

Political campaigns spend big dollars on voter-targeted direct and digital marketing campaigns, so the opinions of direct marketing pros, like well-known and outspoken consultant and author Denny Hatch, are worth noting. Hatch recently wrote an article for Target Marketing magazine, advising the crowded field of 2016 presidential candidates on how they can ease the decision-making nightmare for voters. First, he urges them to avoid BOMFOG, a term gleaned from a former candidate-client's own speech content description: Brotherhood of Man Under the Fatherhood of God. Hatch cites BOMFOG as an illustration of the general political tendency to "bloviate, equivocate, pontificate, obviate and flat-out lie" while avoiding specifics. But when you have over 20 primary candidates, Republican and Democrat, that kind of tactic will leave voters either grabbing at televised one-liners and gaffes, or confused and turned-off. Instead, Hatch suggests that, as in the business world, each candidate should create a pithy, personal resume for voters. That political resume would consist of a CV (99 words maximum about family, net worth, education and career); a Preamble about basic philosophy of governance (249 words maximum); and a series of Issue Stances (99 words each). Hatch provides his own examples of issue opinions, which readers won't necessarily accept, but the idea is to offer a manifesto that is specific, punchy and printed (no BOMFOG evaporating at the end of the speech or media sound bite). Issues include hot topics such as energy, foreign policy, climate change, health care, immigration, jobs, national security, taxes, and more. Hatch taps into marketing basics with his ideas. "Specifics sell. Generalities do not," he notes, quoting marketing freelancer Andrew J. Byrne. By creating a punchy resume, each candidate can focus on his or her USP (Unique Selling Proposition), Hatch suggests. See: http://www.targetmarketingmag.com/article/selling-president-2016-bomfog/

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