This post was originally featured on FastCompany.com. The original blog, written by Nick Nanton and JW Dicks can be found here: Mitt Romney and The Power of Discipline
It’s been a long and grueling campaign for Romney, one that saw numerous candidates surpass him in the polls before ultimately fading out. But after months of campaigning, Romney can finally set his aim at the White House. While he’s doing so, let’s take a moment to examine the marketing strategies that ultimately proved successful:
1) Consistency counts. While Romney has faced criticism for the way in which his convictions have evolved over the years, there is no questioning the consistency of his message during the primary campaign. While Rick Santorum generated controversy by addressing social issues and Newt Gingrich talked of putting a base on the moon, Mitt Romney hammered home his economic message day after day. In an election year where the economy is overwhelmingly the largest concern for voters, his focus paid off.
2) You can’t win votes (or sell products) without exposure. Romney’s critics complain that his ability to blanket the airwaves with campaign commercials was the key to his victory. Whatever you may believe about the role of money in politics, there is no denying that you can’t win without exposure. The same is true of your business—if you want to dominate your market, you must seek consistent exposure through credible channels.
3) Systems and discipline are essential for long term success. Romney’s closest competitors down the stretch were Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. While both of them inspired passionate support, they also made critical organizational mistakes which may have cost them the nomination. Gingrich was unable to meet the requirements to appear on the ballot in his home state of Virginia, while Santorum was ineligible to compete for nearly 25% of the delegates in the crucial Ohio primary. Passion and enthusiasm are great—but if you can’t back them up with rock-solid marketing and management systems, you will eventually flame out.
4) Control the conversation. Mitt Romney’s fundamental pitch is simple: his years of spectacular success in the private sector position him as uniquely qualified to turn the struggling economy around. He didn’t have the foreign policy experience that many of his rivals boasted. His conservative credentials were often questioned. But by refusing to let the conversation stray from his strengths, Romney was able to minimize the impact of these weaknesses.
Mitt Romney’s candidacy wasn’t the most dramatic—but his discipline and his consistent message allowed him to come out on top. How can you apply these principles to your ownbranding and marketing campaigns?