Identity Branding

I see this a lot these days on both sides of the political divide.

People create a personal brand for themselves, complete with a logo, brand strategy, and marketing campaign. In a sense, it is a smart thing to do - as the advertising executives would say, "market yourself."

But then there is a subtle shift.

Typically part of this marketing is identifying your brand with a historically marginalized group or cause, and bonus points if you can intersect two or more marginalized groups into your personal brand. Their identity is their brand, and vice-versa.

Did you know I am a Green Bisexual? Oh yes, that is me. That is my personal brand. That is what I identify with and I even have the logo on my Twitter feed and sticker on my laptop. I am a Green Bisexual all the way, please identify with that and support my personal brand! See these cartoons I draw? They all support my Green Bisexual brand!

Now, let me take you down the rabbit hole.

So you don't like my cartoons...?

You don't.

Like...? BRAND?

You must be a homophobic climate change denier. Look everyone! Please attack this person and get them the hell off social media! Look how great all of you are! A victory for inclusion and environmental causes has just happened! Pat all yourselves on the back! We have won another battle for the good guys!

My cartoons could be shit, even by my own admission. Honestly. Screw my haters. My brand comes first. The world owes me, after all. This is how things work. I don't really care what I have to do to survive in this unfair world.

Flip this around, I am a Red White and Blue member of the Patriot Army! Hey, did you see my cartoons...?

What? You don't like THEM?

Communist asshole traitor America-hating freak.

I am reminded of what a former political figure said about activism, and I paraphrase. Activism isn't liking a hashtag or attacking people on social media, it is marching in the streets and fighting for injustice against the water cannons, wooden batons, and tear gas.

And...if all your activism is online brand strategy...I guarantee you once it threatens your ISP's bottom line, or someone your ISP gives political contributions to, they will shut you off. Just something else to figure into that marketing plan of yours...once things get real.

You are ready for the day when it gets real? ...aren't you?