The Trump administration has been no stranger to a large amount of media scrutiny. It seems that every other day there’s some new scandal that is “breaking news”. Good or bad many people would, and do, argue President Trump and his administration are master at manipulating the media for attention.
I would argue they’re incredibly wrong.
Case in point, the strange and largely unnoticed Twitter account of Gorsuch Facts. This thing smacks of Donald Trumpisms right down to the fascinating way of speaking that even Kanye West has an admiration for. The profile description of “ Judge Gorsuch will be fair to all regardless of their background or beliefs. This is exactly the kind of #SCOTUS Justice @POTUS promised. #JusticeGorsuch” reads like a typical Trump speech. Yet, there’s something that’s just below the surface that highlights Trump’s communications problem. The reason that this official account about one of his biggest appointments has gone relatively unnoticed.
It references the man himself.
Republicans, Democrats, Berniecrats, High Energy Nimble Navigators, and everyone in between have made the claim that Trump is a master of manipulating journalists into giving him “billions of free advertising”. Even the CEO of CBS said “For Us, Economically, Donald’s Place in This Election Is a Good Thing”. This however doesn’t make him an effective communicator. It makes him effective at building a cult of personality, not of being a great marketer. Great marketers build brands that go beyond themselves. Among the world’s most recognized brands include McDonald’s, Walmart, Ford, Coca-Cola, and more.
Name one of these companies CEOs. Name one of their CMOs.
You don’t have to. They have incredibly effective communications specialists supporting them from both the inside and out that don’t rely on outrage and a cult of personality. They communicate their value through showing you, through consistency, through discipline.
I want to be clear, I have no specific axe to grind against Donald Trump. Surely we all have seen the “marketing gurus” who want you to take their class on how to get rich online. Yet you can’t name their companies, just the person. They can’t promote a product, just a cynical brand of narcissism that preys on the hopes and dreams of the naive. While they may read this and rightly criticize me that I have no Lamborghinis in my Lamborghini account, the truth is that I, and the people like me, have hundreds of wins that we will never be known for. We work for things bigger than ourselves. We build systems instead of a reliance on people. The true test of your ability to build a competent communications organization is how well it functions after you’re gone.
So for all the aspiring advertisers, and marketers, and entrepreneurs out there, don’t emulate these people. These 1 quick secret to building the startup of your dreams. These hollow dream peddlers. If you want to get shit done, if you really want to market your startup, if you want to grow your brand, start emulating people that do it without wallowing in their own crapulence. The people that get paid, the people that build empires, are the ones that do so silently and with discipline far from the spotlight.
Gorsuch’s Twitter is a Ghost Town, or Why Donald Trump Has a Messaging Problem. was originally published in Notes On Digital Marketing.