What Donald Trump has taught me about Marketing

As much as we try to compartmentalise Politics, Personal and Work, sometimes there are crossovers to improve our career and help us to be better people if we are attentive. Here are what I learnt so far from the US Presidential candidate Donald Trump in his campaign.


Donald Trump appeal to a niche

Unlike what most marketing books and common sense say, Donald Trump appeals to a very small group rather than appeal to everyone all the time. His target audience for this campaign is White Americans affected by the slow growth of the US economy. Being specific to a certain niche in that audience has allowed him to build mainly 3 things; credibility, popularity and media attention. When you pick a niche, you become an expert in your field very quickly. This makes you the topic for people in your niche as well as other niche who will then talk about you through word of mouth; the holy grail of marketing. When you serve your message to a niche, other groups will definitely be unhappy and you will then get cross-featured by other people, making you disseminate your message faster.


Donald Trump uses the majority

In many of Donald Trump’s speech, he use the a phrase to help him prevent getting scrutinized by the press and the phrase is “many people say”. When he use sentences and starters like this, he becomes instantly credible in the audience’s eyes (or ears if you really want to get specific). It is like saying “Scientific studies have shown that drinking milk everyday is good for you”. The instant you finish that sentence, you form a concerete impression on people for giving credible statements. Imagine repeating it 10 times, or a 100 times, your credibility goes through the roof.


Donald Trump tells stories

Nobody cares about what you say. People care about being entertained. If you can tell a story that links somehow to your brand and company, then you have a topic most people want to hear. Have you seen that when newspaper cover stories of big brands, they will feature the humble beginnings of the entrepreneur? This is because it bridge the gap between the audience and the entrepreneur, making him relatable to the common man. People will understand the struggle of working hard to keep his daughter in school, much more so if he is trying at the same time to rid himself of cancer in his body. The take-away is this; find a quality that you would like to highlight in your brand and think of real-life examples where that quality is being highlighted.


Donald Trump speaks like a 10 year old

In most of his speeches, Donald Trump aims to speak using simple English. The reason? You are more likely to process what he says compared to him rambling off into technicalities and the loopholes of politics and finance. See what I did just there? The more technical your content, speech or ad, the easier it is for someone to follow your message (that is if they are paying attention in the first place at all). It is easier to grab attention with simple words in your messaging compared to big jargons everywhere.


Donald Trump likes to go off script

I don’t know if this is intended in part or orchestrated, but Donald Trump pulls it off without a hitch. His tendency to go off script gives the audience an impression that there is something he finally is letting out of the bag. This technique allows your audience to become more receptive to your speech, making them more attentive and easier to convince. To put it simply; until the moment you decides to end, chances are the audience are at your mercy of the message you are trying to deliver. It is only after it all that people try to poke holes in your campaigns or your message that they form a negative opinion about your brand. The next time you need to deliver a message, a TVC or a campaign, memorise what you have to say but visually tear up something else on stage.


The whole concept of sales, marketing and branding in my opinion can be broken down into 3 simple human interactions; speaking privately to people, speaking publicly on stage, forming the impression of how other people talk about you. It is thus key that you find a message and a quality that you can benefit your company from and leverage it in the entire communication process of your company.

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