Being Obama: Products Rip Off the Obama Mystique

We’ve discussed how Brand Obama has been open to being appropriated by its supporters. Now other brands are jumping into what might be called the “O-conomy.”

Here are some products drawing on Obama’s brand equity.

In a Plea for Relevancy, Pepsi Steals Obama’s Logo

Business Week‘s David Kiley writes,
“This is a special time in America—difficult and historic. This ad and its language comes off as a ripoff. Not an homage, but a ripoff. And it cheapens the ad and the campaign.”

Dollgate: “Marvelous Malia” and “Sweet Sasha”
The maker of Beanie Babies recently rolled out two dolls that look a lot like the Obama daughters. Ty now says it’s a coincidence, and they just just dug these alliterative names. The First Lady isn’t buying that.

Nanotechnology Promotes Itself By Making Smallest Ever Obama Images
After watching a long Reuters ad, you’ll see microscopic Obama images. I’m not sure I think one whit better about nanotech because of this, but it got coverage, which seems to have been the goal.

Audi Corners Inauguration Advertising
Audi was the exclusive sponsor of streaming live coverage of the ceremony on,,, and, and has purchased an eight-page “Progress Is Beautiful” newspaper insert. Hey look, an auto manufacturer spending like it’s 1999.

“Yes We Can” Perfume
Have other presidents had their own scents? Marketing “Eau de Reagan” just wouldn’t work, I suspect.

The Classic Obama Thong
The use of the word “classic” on Cafe Press somehow asserts this is a Yankee tradition.

The Head O’ State Presidential Pleasure Toy
Insert your comment here.  Is that change in your pocket or….oh, come on, you can do better than that!

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