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Branding the next president

The Obama 2012 campaign doesn’t have an official slogan yet, but one possible contender is getting some attention: “Change Is.”

The slogan recently appeared on a new shirt in the Obama campaign store. A description explains the slogan like this: “Our new ‘Change Is’ Tee highlights the change that the President has brought and will continue to fight for.”

ABC News observed the slogan on display at a fundraiser this week, and reported: “As for whether ‘change is’ will be the official slogan for 2012, a campaign official did not immediately respond to ABC News request for comment.”

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“Change is” not a bad slogan, and most voters will recognize it as a sequel to the Obama 2008 slogan, “Change We Can Believe In.” But it has some drawbacks. For one thing, it’s odd for an incumbent to petition for “Change.” For another, it’s an easy slogan to parody (“Change is… going to kick in eventually, be patient”). And finally, it’s hard to hear the president saying it.

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All the Republican slogans, meanwhile, contain the word “America.”

Mitt Romney is using “Believe in America” on his website and merchandise.

Rick Santorum seems to be going with “The Courage to Fight For America.”

Newt Gingrich appears to be trying a few slogans out, including “Rebuilding the America We Love,” “Winning the Future Together,” and “Leadership Now.”

And Ron Paul‘s slogan is “Restore America Now.”

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Blah stuff. But you think this is easy? Try summarizing the essence of an entire presidential campaign in a few simple words, that are at once powerful and inoffensive, and that no one else is using. Good luck.

— By Daryl Lang. Filed under Copywriting, Marketing, Politics

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