By Evan Henerson
The foibles of Donald Trump this election season are making a loser not just out of his presidential campaign, but potentially of his $3 billion name. More than a few news outlets have reported boycotts of Trumped-up products, from hotels to golf courses.
Clothing too. Following the news of lewd comments Trump made about women on Access Hollywood, marketing executive Shannon Coulter started a boycott of the clothing line by Trump‘s daughter, Ivanka. Using the hashtags #GrabYourWallets and #Ivankant, Coulter’s boycott drew at least plenty of poll support. A survey of nearly 2,000 voters found that 57% of women said they would not buy Ivanka Trump’s clothing as a result of her dad’s swinish behavior.
Ivanka defended her own position, not her father’s.
“People can do what they like. But I’d prefer to talk to the millions, tens of millions of American women, who are inspired by the brand and the message that I have created,” Ivanka told Good Morning America. “My advocacy of women, trying to empower them in all aspects of their life, started long before this presidential campaign did. I’ve never politicized that message. People who are seeking to politicize it because they may disagree with the politics of my father, there’s nothing I can do to change that.”
And that’s just Ivanka. Jonathan Ernst of Reuters reports that, thanks largely to personal or grass roots level protests, Trump’s properties are taking hits. The article talks about rooms at Trump properties in New York and Washington being available at far lower rates than other comparable hotels and say that some organizations are considering relocating to non Trump owned properties. At Trump Place in Manhattan, which Trump doesn’t even own, a petition is circulating to take Trump’s name off the building.
“Experts say the Trump brand is tarnished and at a tricky crossroads as his appeal shifts from the well-heeled, high-income people he has long courted to a more middle-class base, including the fervent fans he cultivated during the campaign,” Ernst reports.
Trump’s camp denies that there are any problems and say that his brand is doing just fine, thanks very much.
The real test may come after the election. As Robert Passikoff, president of Brand Keys told Reuters. “You can’t continue the kind of activities and have these revelations without significantly affecting how the people see the brand. The man and the brand are inseparable.”