Master of Branding

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

As journalism students, we’ve heard a lot of the term “branding” in class, in our books, and in our research. There is one person who has recently used the media to become a one-woman national media empire.

After the 2008 elections, she chose not to return to Alaska to finish out her term as governor. While many would assume this would hurt her aspirations, it has actually helped. She has used the media to her advantage and is now her own business.

She recently debuted as the host of “Real American Stories” on Fox News four times a year, promising that it would “reaffirm our pioneering spirit and unmatched generosity, here and around the world.” She was paid a $1.25 million retainer for her book, “Going Rogue,” which has sold 2.2 million copies. Another book is tentatively scheduled for this fall. She also has an eight-part series on TLC called “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” coming soon.

Is she really that popular? Her Facebook page has 1.5 million fans. When she did her first paid appearance as a commentator on “The O’Reilly Factor,” it had an extra one million viewers. Oprah Winfrey’s show achieved the biggest ratings in two years when she appeared.

So what has she done? She has stayed true to her version of America. It is full of plain folks spending a lot of time overcoming a great deal, including a government that she argues often intends to do more harm than good. She’s about “everyday people and the values American’s hold so dear,” she stated on Facebook.

Whatever she is doing, whether the media is supportive or not, she is definitely branding herself into the career and persona she wants to be.


Ryan Fuerstenau April 13, 2010 at 10:34 AM  

I dont get it, it seems to me like the dumber this woman becomes the more people follow her. First of all she is not that smart. Or at least has the appearance of not being that smart. She is also not the first woman in politics to gain a huge following. Somehow though this woman just keeps growing and can apparently do no wrong. It's really frustrating.

Grant Rodgers April 13, 2010 at 1:49 PM  

Well I may somewhat agree with Ryan, I think he's trying to say something more along these lines. Sarah Palin certainly has built a brand for herself in the media. With this, it then becomes even more important for voters to become educated on the candidates, rather than vote on popularity or familiarity.

Leslie Hanson April 13, 2010 at 9:37 PM  

Although she drives me crazy personally, she has done a great job at setting her brand. No one knew who she was 2 years ago, and now everyone knows and has an opinion of her.
I agree with Grant that with her popularity comes the need to educated voters. Hopefully the more she speaks the more educated people will become how little she seems to know, or how Ryan put it how dumb she is.

Marcia Moore April 19, 2010 at 1:06 PM  

It scares me that there are so many STUPID people in this country who actually think this idiot has something to say. It scares me beyond words.

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