What Marketers can Learn from the Trump Campaign
Marketers in our industry could study President-elect (PE) Donald J. Trump’s campaign for the White House for years to unpack all of its lessons. We will only scratch the surface, but let’s inspire some Ivy League graduate students, while also identifying ways you and your location(s) can benefit from these lessons too.
First, PE Trump tackled important issues head on.
- He did not shy away from controversial issues.
- PE Trump took on the establishment in his own Republican (GOP) party.
- He took on the Democratic establishment and Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2-billion-dollar campaign machine.
- He took on President of the United States (POTUS) Barack Hussein Obama’s legacy, who has higher personal popularity than most second term presidents, even though his polices were not universally popular.
- PE Trump took on much of the mainstream media.
- He took on the politically correct (PC) culture.
- Trump accomplished his victory with much less money than his GOP rivals, and far less money that the Clinton campaign.
So how did he achieve a victory after all those times the pundits, experts and his opponents thought he said or did something, that meant he was finished?
In no particular order of importance:
- Trump had a series of simple messages.
- When he stayed on message, those talking points appealed to large numbers of voters.
- He was multi-media, including social media.
- He spent money, but didn’t have to spend as much as his opponents.
- He tapped the enthusiasm among his allies and supporters.
- Trump’s allies, team members, surrogates and supporters were largely loyal.
- His messages targeted weakness in his opposition and showcase strengths in his personal history and policy positions.
- He did not stick to conventional norms. While many of his policies were “conservative” Republican positions, on trade agreements, infrastructure, entitlements, and other issues, he did not mind veering from GOP orthodoxy.
- He was a long-time insider who admitted to using the system to succeed, turned outsider who challenged the system in his party, the opposition parties, and the media.
- He did not pretend to be perfect.
- He did not back down.
- He delivered often surprising victories or came back from what others called gaffs that would have killed other candidates. To rephrase, he never quit.
- He created what some might think were unlikely coalitions for a GOP candidate.
- He targeted groups, such as African-Americans and Hispanics, in direct and unsubtle ways that didn’t pander. Rather, he attempted to show them why he was a better option than Secretary Clinton or the third-party candidates.
These lists are not all inclusive, and we aren’t weighted as to which items were ‘more or less’ important. They all blended together, like a stew, to deliver a victory.
This post won’t dive full bore into how these facts could translate into lessons for manufactured housing. What the Cutting Edge
will state is that there are numerous takeaways. Let’s mention just a few before wrapping this up.
- PE Trump did not do it all alone. He – and we – need to establish real allies and supporters.
- Enthusiasm makes a difference.
- He never quit. He kept coming and coming. We should not quit either.
- Just as his building projects often come in on or ahead of time and on or under budget, so too he made his media investments yield larger than typical results.
- He had a combination of paid team members, who were experts, along with volunteer supporters, who with signs, bumper stickers, hats and online efforts made his message go much further.
As a side note, the article linked below in the Patch suggests some of the reasons why manufactured housing pros – no matter who you supported in the primaries or general election -should be hopeful for positive outcomes from a Trump Presidency.
Ladies and gentlemen, U.S. Housing is a trillion dollar a year Industry. Manufactured homes are roughly 5% of the current total of all U.S. sales of all types of conventional and factory-built housing. That means we have huge upside potential. That’s one of many reasons why we can go into a market and move the needle positively when others can’t – we know how to attract and convert that conventional housing buyer, which represents a much wider share of the market.
Given the growing reality of the affordable housing crisis, with rents and conventional housing costs rising steadily, with incomes flat for most Americans, we have the right product at the right time.
By applying the commonsense lessons from successful marketing efforts, including lessons found inside and outside MH – such as the example of the Trump campaign – we could grow in your markets and nationally to levels you may not believe are possible.
With the right plan and proper execution, it can be done.
Call or message to discuss how it can be done for you and your location(s). ##
(Image credits are as shown above.)