That is kinda correct, though I Bernie Sanders 2020 Not Me Us shirt because I can’t really say what happens at the subconscious level. It’s more that it forces us to process a conflicting message, and this is a terrible practice when it comes to constructing a short, pithy, persuasive slogan. It’s somewhat analogous to saying, “I don’t like you. I love you.” The meaning of that phrase is overwhelming positive. But it has the effect of causing a bit of discomfort, as it takes a split second to parse the negative and positive messages. Our brains are fully capable of discerning the intended meaning.
Bernie Sanders 2020 Not Me Us shirt, ladies tee, tank top, and v-neck
But if your goal is clear communication without any residue of mixed messages, it’s best to re-phrase. I disagree wholeheartedly. “Us” is still in first person, thereby reinserting Bernie Sanders beside the reader (and any political ad will make you think of all the other Bernie Sanders 2020 Not Me Us shirt so just drawing them to mind briefly is no issue as long as, as I’ve demonstrated, Bernie hasn’t actually ousted himself). Official campaign slogans really don’t matter. Do you remember, off the top of your head, Obama’s slogan in 2012? Or Hillary’s in 2016? Because they weren’t Obama for America or I’m With Her. You probably remember Trump’s 2016 slogan, but what about Romney’s in 2012? What about Bernie’s in 2016, for that matter? It was A Future to Believe In. There is video of Bernie giving a speech and some Black Lives Matter ladies take over his podium. Bernie did something that seemed pretty admirable – he gave up his podium and let them have their say. Unfortunately, This is not a good look for someone seeking the presidency – the president cannot let other people spontaneously spoil his plans to do enact their agenda.
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The presidency is a leadership position, so the candidate must have leadership qualities, regardless of how good their policies are. This type of behavior, and this terrible slogan, are going to do Bernie in unless he changes course. At this point, I believe that there is almost no chance Bernie can take the presidency. That’s a highly dubious claim. And in terms of existing marketing research – a presidential candidate is not a toaster or a new set of drapes or whatever. Maybe there’s some research out there for buying Bernie Sanders 2020 Not Me Us shirt goods that shows you shouldn’t lead with negative statements, but for those things it is absolutely possible that a consumer spends just a few seconds making a brand decision. That’s simply not the case with an election. The sell is far more nuanced and even “low information” voters spend hours thinking about it. As such the slogan sets the tone more than it directly pitches the product. And on that front, “Not Me. Us.” is very on-message for Bernie.