Obama: A brand in search of a slogan
Everyone knows what Barack Obama’s campaign slogan was in 2008. No one seems to know what it will be for 2012.The White House has been cycling through catchphrases since announcing his reelection bid a year ago: Winning the Future, We Can’t Wait, An America Built to Last, An Economy Built to Last, A Fair Shot.
They seem to be looking for one to resonate — and the constant unveiling of new ones suggests that so far, none of them have. To communications experts, the kaleidoscope of slogans is the latest reflection of the difficulties finding and marketing a message that Obama has faced almost since his inauguration — another challenge that came with the shift from insurgent outsider to sitting president.
“He’s all over the place,” said Bruce I. Newman, the Bill Clinton brand-messaging adviser whose “Bridge to the 21st Century” helped define Clinton’s 1996 reelection campaign.
Yes, a slogan is just a few words for the background of campaign lit and stump speeches. But its importance, Newman explained, shouldn’t be understated.
“That becomes the branding of the whole campaign,” he said. “That becomes the anchor to bring together disparate voter segments. It’s the glue, if you will.”
The only credible slogan for either side is “The Other Guy’s Worse”.