'Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don't'
September 2, 2023
Watching the presidential debates the other night I was reminded how much we use little jingles and catch phrases in marketing products and political points of view. We've all done it, I remember when I had my office in Los Angeles using a cartoon caricature of a rolled-up dollar with arms and legs and a scissor in his hands with a caption, "Why pay more? Pay less, call Marty Pay."
Some of the campaign ads worked so well that we automatically think of the product when we hear the slogan. Who doesn't think of Wendy's when they hear "Where's the beef?" And doesn't "snack, crackle, pop" remind you of a bowl of Rice Krispies? Whether or not hearing these slogans will make you go out and buy Wendy's or have cereal for breakfast this morning is another subject, but 30 second Super Bowl ads can bring in $7 million dollars, so somebody must be paying attention.
For some companies the name of the company becomes the product. If I reach for a "Kleenex" who knows what companies' product it will be. How many of us have asked for a Coke not knowing if it's a real Coke or some Cola product? Slogans create recognition.
Does this work equally well in the political arena, you bet! Many of us remember when President Ford slipped on the stairs of Air Force One. "Saturday Night Live" did a funny skit with Chevy Chase and our 38th President permanently became the butt of jokes about his physical abilities. In reality he was the first and only All-American athlete to become President, but this was lost in the joke and the caricature.
My hope for the upcoming political season is that we don't get too caught up in the jingles and catch phrases both sides will be using. Let's try and look beyond the rhetoric and judge how we vote based on how the candidates match up with our values ... not the one liners we are so used to hearing.
Marty Pay is a contributing writer for The Loop newspaper and has been a Financial Planner for years and teaches Finance at a local University. He can be reached at Farmers Insurance in Tehachapi (661) 822-3737.