Sunday's NYT has a John Tierney article on Kerry, his brand equity, and how he has an uphill positioning/marketing problem. CSULB students can get this via COAST.
So how can the ever-patrician Mr. Kerry appeal to poor and working-class voters? Russell Simmons, the hip-hop music and fashion mogul, recommends that Mr. Kerry spend more time visiting inner-city neighborhoods, preferably accompanied by rap stars, while still remaining true to his class. Mr. Simmons points to his own success as a marketing consultant to Courvoisier, the cognac with a Thurston Howell image that became a staple of hip-hop culture.
"We brought in the hip-hop but we kept it exclusive and always protected the brand equity of Courvoisier," he said. "John Kerry can do that, too. He has to get out there with the grassroots and still dress the part. He's a better dresser than George Bush - that pink tie he's been wearing looks good with a dark suit. John Kerry has brand equity, and he needs to protect it. But he doesn't do that by windsurfing."
On a tangent, all of this reminds me of the Natalie Merchant/10,000 Maniac lyrics & video to Candy Everybody Wants, which, at the time, I thought of as both visually clever and odd, being an anti-marketing form of marketing/promotions (music video). Of course, anti-marketing marketing is all over the place these days.