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Parties, Identity and Brands in Political Marketing Open Access

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Political marketing is now an established modus operandi in politics, especially in America, the cradle of the study and development of marketing in general. However, it has not yet reached the levels of sophistication seen in the corporate world, but rather copied superficial techniques. It is common to see unorganized marketing tactics as opposed to holistic, long term, strategic communication campaigns in politics. As much as marketing is effective, it needs a backbone to succeed. That backbone that in corporations happens to be the organizational culture, is not easy to apply in politics. The task seems even more complicated in America, which is considered a candidate centered political scenario. The lackluster of parties denies a good opportunity to gather around a nucleus that could provide the internal cohesion and structure needed to build that backbone. However, to what extent is it true that Americans prefer personality over party? Evidence points otherwise. If there is a greater desire for party politics than some are willing to admit, there might be a great opportunity for parties to capitalize on the benefits of communication strategies that transcend marketing tactics. As much as ideology is considered a thing of the past, it still holds weight and should be considered in the making of its modern counterpart: a vision.In the advent of new media it is more important than ever to maintain a cohesive direction. It is more challenging than ever, with information moving in real time speed and in massive amounts. Therefore, the only way to stand above the noise is to have built that strong communication strategy based on a vision that everyone understands and shares. Online success depends on offline efforts; it is a result, not an event. If a party fails to build their identity offline, this will be reflected online.In this thesis I have argued how it is possible to apply further corporate communication concepts, especially the vision, to political campaigns and greatly benefit in the process, as well as to face the many communicational challenges of modern times. I have analyzed how a more profound application of marketing can help with most of these challenges, such as turnout, negative advertising, or the Internet.

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