Thursday, February 11, 2016

How Voters Assess a Candidate

By Karen Leland

It was a banner night for Bernie Sanders, who handily beat out Hillary Clinton to win the New Hampshire primary. Bernie was able to hit this home run because of his consistent personal brand and on-point message to millennials. But he was also able to get there, in large part, because it was only a two-horse race. Unlike the Republicans, who had quadruple the number of players.

Mr. Trump’s strategy of putting the other Republican candidates on the defensive, so they double down in an effort to protect their flanks, seems to be working. (At least it’s working to keep his colleagues in the race.) Although South Carolina is a different animal than New Hampshire, you have to question whether the Republican Party needs to get its act together, decide to be a team, and reduce the playing field enough to let a true favorite rise to the head of the pack.

Whether you are a candidate running for political office or a business pitching for patronage, you would do well to remember that people vote for you (in the ballot box and with dollars) based on the three critical criteria of your brand – personal, local and global. Your best ground game is to be a winner in all three. [more...]

Karen Leland is an expert on branding and marketing. She works with CEOs, executives and entrepreneurs on building stronger personal, business and team brands.

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