Positioning Bernie

If you have been around the internet in the past week, you have certainly seen it.

One of the greatest example of positioning in recent times.

The informal attire of Bernie Sanders to last week’s presidential inaguration, the meme-frenzy that followed, and the way him and his team promptly reacted. All of it has put on display a fantastic positioning exercise.

  1. It has set the product clearly apart from the competition (in this case, other personalities or politicians). Just look at this picture to see what I mean. Or this one. Sanders has built his brand on being against the establishment and close to the average Joe, and spotting him at the inauguration was just a clear, immediate confirmation of exactly that.
  2. It has demonstrated a wonderful knowledge of the target market. Many commentators might have said that he was out of place, that it was even offensive to show up at such a formal event dressed like that. And the answer from Sanders and his team would have probably been: who cares?! Because the point of positioning, at the end of the day, is not to appeal to everybody, but to appeal to your best customer. Wearing mittens hand made from recycled material by a Vermont school teacher and a jacket by a Vermont outerware company sounds pretty on point for a progressive senator from Vermont.
  3. It inspired action. A part from the meme, the story has been shared, liked, commented infinite times on social media in the past few days (you can find a collection of the funniest Bernie posts in this article). And on top of it, Sanders’ team has double down on positioning by creating merchandise and selling it to support Meals on Wheels.

There is nothing better than great marketing, whether it is intentional or not.

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