Every four years, new presidential campaign merch appears and takes over our cars, yards, and closets. The race to the White House is long, competitive, and expensive, and the candidates’ merch usually starts to pop up a year or two before the heavy campaign action starts. The way these presidential hopefuls choose to portray themselves through their campaign branding and merchandise is vital to their public perception. This years’ candidates have shown real creativity and originality with their campaign merch. Let’s talk about what’s trending on the campaign trail.
Modern Color Scheme and Design
Some of the candidates this year dared to break away from the traditional red, white, and blue color palette in favor of a more modern campaign look. Refreshing!
The promo industry is head over heels for socks these days! (Excuse the pun) Branded socks have proven to be promo magic because of their popularity with millennial, Gen X, and boomer clients.
Campaign stickers have been gracing our bumpers for decades, so why am I mentioning them here? Thanks to millennials and Gen Z VSCO girls, stickers are definitely having a comeback moment. The 2020 candidates insist on being seen with campaign stickers that grace our laptops, notebooks, and water bottles.
On top of their own campaign brand, candidates have teamed up with artists to design special campaign merch, like this Bernie magnet by Jeremy Wheeler and this Warren pride shirt by Alice Lee.
We love our pets, that’s just a fact. Almost all of this year’s candidates have included pet merch in their campaign collections. This is a trend that is certainly easy to get behind. Who doesn’t want to hit a rally with their furry friend in tow decked out in matching campaign gear?
The 90s are back, and the nostalgia is real. Former presidential hopeful, Andrew Yang, hit us hard with these 1992 Polaroid shirts while Pete Buttigieg stole our hearts with campaign scrunchies. Who else is singing 90s power ballads in their heads?
MAGA Is Back ... Or Did It Ever Leave?
There’s no denying that the MAGA hat was a superstar product for the 2016 campaign. Four years later and the bright red hat still seems to hold significant promotional power! President Trump’s campaign collection continues to feature this now-iconic hat but in new and interesting ways.
The presidential campaign is a great reminder of the power of promo. The Smithsonian’s political history curators hit the streets every election year to collect key examples of that year’s promotional merch. When asked about the political history collection, Lisa Kathleen Graddy says, “Our goal is to document the way in which Americans influence and participate in their democracy”.
Sporting our favorite candidate’s campaign merch is our way of showing support. It drives our urge to take part in our democracy, volunteer, and vote. What’s your favorite presidential campaign promo trend?