Never in history has the person occupying the Oval Office been so marketed, merchandised, packaged, promoted, and, well, exploited. His theme of “change” was reduced to a cliche when adopted by so many marketers, and there’s been a bit of a media backlash against a slew of dubious Obama products. (Even NBC’s “Today” Show devoted a rather negative segment to Obama marketing mania last week)
Yet, as much as I hate the Montel Williams infomercials, and I’d rather see them sell his agenda instead of the “Yes-We-Can” Opener, I can’t get too worked up over the selling of the President. That’s largely because of the breakthrough he represents, of course, but I think the marketing frenzy is also a result of Obama’s authentically “cool” persona, and the fact that he’s far more in tune with pop culture and technology than any previous prez. And the most interesting part to me is that, once again, PR comes out on top. I’d bet the President will do more for Blackberry just by keeping his securely – and publicly – in his grip than his image will for any of the marketers jumping on the Obama brand-wagon.