While Donald Trump is a polarizing candidate, late night TV universally loves him. From Trump’s hair, to the stuff that comes out of his mouth, there’s just so much material for the comedian.
We already refer to the guy with just his last name. How much more presidential can you get?
When talking about Trump’s candidacy, you can’t forget to mention his “Make America Great Again” hat. The hat has become a selfie must-have accessory and apparently occupies a space in Tom Brady’s locker.
Stephen Colbert recently referenced Trump’s hat during his late night routine. He highlighted the importance of the hat in this presidential race by citing a focus group participant’s statement about Trump, “We know his goal is to make America great again… It’s on his hat.”
Colbert went on to joke that other presidential candidates should sum up their campaigns using only headgear. Rick Perry of Texas shouldn’t wear a cowboy hat bearing his most famous quote… “Oops.” It’s a funny idea, but the suggestion to boil down a campaign to words simple enough to be communicated using only headgear is probably good advice.
Trump’s headgear has done wonders for his campaign. So without further ado… the 5 marketing lessons you can learn from Donald Trump’s hat:
1. KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID (KISS)
Trump’s hat is the essence of simplicity. Even if Trump ripped off Reagan for his “Make America Great Again” slogan, he has made it his own. He’s also making it work online. It’s simple enough to make a great hashtag. (#makeamericagreatagain)
What do I mean by simple? You keep a message simple when you say just what you want to, no more, no less. Trump knows what he wants to say, and he can say it on a hat. America used to be great, and politicians are ruining the country.
It doesn’t take an Ivy League educated lawyer to understand what the Trump campaign is about. This is precisely why he’s hitting a chord. People don’t have to wade through political speak to figure out who Trump is or what he wants to do. He tells them.
It’s not just the message on Trump’s hat that’s simple, the hat’s visually simple as well. The design doesn’t distract from the message. And its simplicity is also part of what makes the hat cool. A big logo or even a fancy font would likely ruin the hat’s somewhat ironic appeal.
Follow the lead of Trump’s headgear. Don’t make your customers dig through industry jargon to figure out what your company’s all about. Just tell them.
You should be straightforward with everything from blog articles to social media posts, but it’s even more important with your CTA’s (Calls to Action). Your CTA should tell your customers exactly what you want them to do without a shred of confusion.
Visual simplicity is important for your online marketing too. This is important to what we do at Launch Tower, Houston web design. Your website design shouldn’t be flashy or ornate. The primary function of web design is getting your customers to act, not to put on a show.
Don’t try to do too much with your web page. Good website design shouldn’t be obvious. It’s often completely unnoticeable.
You want to keep the social media images simple too. Successful social media campaigns have a job to do(assuming you’re maximizing the return on your social investments). Make sure your social media images are promoting your content, pumping your brand and cultivating your leads.
2. MAKE IT SHAREABLE
Trump’s hat was the perfect summer selfie accessory of 2015. People are still sharing pictures wearing the hat. Guess what that means… free publicity.
I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “Many hands make light work.” Well the same thing is true for your marketing. If you want to get hands pumping out posts and uploading images on social media, you have two options: hire a social media team OR make your content shareable.
Obviously, you want to get the free publicity that comes with shareable content, but we all know it’s not that simple. So what makes Trumps hat so shareable? It’s probably because it’s visually striking. People are naturally attracted to images more than text. Images are highly shareable, and social networks are increasingly jumping on the visual content bandwagon.
Pinterest, Instagram, and Vine have built their entire networks around visual content. Trump’s hat has proven that it is a force to be reckoned with in this space. But why is Trump’s hat so visually popular.
Well, it might be because it’s red. Believe it or not, people make up their minds about you or your products in 90 seconds or less. Their basis? Mostly color. Researchers can’t pin specific emotions to individual colors, but it’s clear that red elicits a strong response, which is why companies like Coca Cola, Netflix and Target prominently feature the color in their advertising.
If you want people sharing your content and social media posts as quickly as they’re sharing pictures of the Trump hat, create visually striking content. Pay attention to color. Most importantly, A/B Test your content to find out how well what you’re doing is performing.
3. PLAY TO NOSTALGIA
Psychology tells us that it’s natural to feel good about the past. The message on Trump’s hat points people back in time. When people look back, they typically become more optimistic and inspired about the future.
For Trump, the feelings his message inspires makes supporters excited about the future with Trump as the leader of the free world. Getting your customers to reflect on simpler times, can make them optimistic about the way their future will change for the better with your help.
Make your leads nostalgic by reversing the clock on your social media game. Take advantage of throwback Thursday. (#tbt) Companies like BMW, Dodge and Wendy’s regularly take advantage of #tbt to make sure their customers take a blast to the past and come back feeling good about their future.
Reminding your customers what your business or industry looked like ten years ago, also reminds them how far you’ve come. When they compare the past with the present, they’ll likely be more grateful for what you’re offering them now. Gratitude is a powerful emotion.
4. BE MEMORABLE
Trump’s hat is memorable, because it has personality. The hat screams “truck driver” not “college republican.” For most people that’s a really good thing. The hat also adds to the personality of the man who wears it, Trump.
During Stephen Colbert’s bit on Trump’s hat, he talked a little more about that focus group of Trump supporters. The focus group watched taped instances on a television of Trump’s apparent misogyny, political flip flops and awe-inspiring braggadocio.
After hearing the horrible things Trump said, most actually said they liked Trump more than when they walked in.
Most politicians stick with the Political Correctness thing. This approach makes you less offensive. Turns out, it makes you less memorable too.
Trump’s hat falls right in line with his braggadocious attitude. Asserting that you have the power to make America great again is a pretty big boast.
To make your marketing as memorable as the braggadocious line on Trump’s hat, develop a personality. The marketing media we consume on youtube or our favorite social networks is almost always irreverent. It shocks us, makes us laugh, causes us to scratch our heads, makes us go “awww” or combines these feelings in some way. Think about the Old Spice guy or the Gerber baby. These advertisements made you react, and that reaction is what makes them memorable
Here’s a great example from the Discovery Channel’s Twitter feed:
It’s not always easy to be funny or shocking. Don’t try to be something you’re not, but your brand needs personality. Let your brand’s personality shine through in your blog posts, your social media interactions, and even in your email campaigns. Personality makes your online marketing memorable, so your customers will never forget about you or your products.
5. STICK WITH A SINGLE MESSAGE
Even though one of Trump’s schticks is being unscripted and avoiding a teleprompter like the plague, he’s actually pretty good at staying on message(except when he has to talk about Megyn Kelly’s… wherever).
His hat’s on message too, because it reinforces the campaign’s message about making America great again.
Whether Trump’s talking about his wall to keep out all those Mexicans or his plans to take care of veterans, he ties it back to his vision of where he thinks America is and where he thinks the country should be going.
You want to do the same thing with online marketing. Your content, voice and message all need to be aligned. This is what your marketing and branding strategy should be focused on. All of your marketing platforms should work together, and they should be targeted at your customers or buyer personas.
Sticking with a single message makes it crystal clear to your customers what your mission is. Communicating your mission effectively makes your customers trust that you can actually deliver on your promises. And convincing potential customers that you can perform, is what makes them ultimately convert into customers.
As you lead your customers through the buyer’s journey, you should constantly be explaining your mission. Build this trust earning mechanism into the education process, and when your customers move to the purchasing stage of the buyer’s journey, they’ll already be sold on you.