This is just a quick “Anchor” I drew on MS Word – I’ve tried to pick as neutral colors as possible – it is just an anchor made with MS Word art.

I may share opinion pieces on – but I do refrain from taking a political position.  If I may have disappointed you by breaking that rule, just continue reading and find out why this is about Marketing.  I am not nearly involved in Politics enough to make any political analysis of any given candidate.  But I can tell you why Donald Trump is the Anchor of the Republican Party – and his effect is already established.

The “Anchoring Effect” in marketing describes the effect of manipulating consumers/buyers decision making by presenting them with a new “anchor” or baseline to make their decisions when deciding to purchase or act.  This can be better explained in the article published in January 2014.  Let me set an example, first read the following two statements:

  • Statement One: I paid $800 for my roundtrip plane tickets to L.A. (from NYC) last month.
  • Statement Two: I am looking for tickets to make my next trip – they are looking expensive.

How much do you think tickets are selling for?  Odds are, if you didn’t go to a booking site before answering, you assumed the tickets are more than $800.  If I’m an airline marketer, I’m also hoping you’ll find that a price that you’ll accept to paying.  When looking up info on the anchoring effect, I find most writers also referencing this great TED Talk by Dan Ariely – he is able to speak through the examples well.

Donald Trump, be it through choice, intent, or not – is making statement one.  Donald Trump has already made a case, that is followed enough to effect the decision making of voters – particularly those who will not vote for him.  Let’s set some assumptions for the sake of making this easier to explain:

  • the extreme Democratic position as the “Far Left” and the extreme Republican party as the “Far Right”
  • the point at where both parties meet is the “Moderate Middle”
  • Democratic Presidential candidates are somewhere on the “Left” and Republican candidates are somewhere on the “Right”.

Speaking from a Marketing perspective, Donald Trump has established a newly visible point of reference… effectively making the “Far Right” even further to the right, than before his campaign.  If the Republican Party stays its position in the “Right”, then the moderate middle is then pulled to the right to some extent… closer to the (hat is now considered) “moderate” republicans.  Think of it similar to the average or “mean” of a data sample being skewed due to an extreme value.

Without an Extreme Right, or polarizing candidate like Donald Trump – the “extreme” boundaries are held by the Republican Party.  I am not advocating any candidate, but I thought seeing this, somewhat hidden, example of the Anchoring Effect was too interesting to not mention.