Jeb Bush stars in “New Republican” ad. Really?

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It never ceases to amaze me how the Republican Party continues to do things that seem just plain dumb. Take for example this new TV ad called “New Republican.”

As BizPac Review reports, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal have kicked off a campaign for with a TV ad encouraging people to think like a new Republican. The 30-second spot aired nationally, during Fox News Sunday for starters, according to sources.

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I clearly understand the strategy of “re-branding” but a quick review of the Coca-Cola marketing case study might have been useful for the Republican Party. Y’all remember “New Coke?” I am from the home of Coca-Cola — Atlanta — and will never forget this marketing faux pas. Coke decided to rebrand its time-honored Coke taste and formula and the results were horrific, an abject failure.

The result? Coke went back to something called Coca-Cola Classic which returned to its true form. You just don’t tamper with an icon. I remember selling Cokes at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium during Braves games. We didn’t shout, “get your ice cold soda here.” We shouted, “get your ice cold Coca-Cola here.”

I also remember the failed ad campaign from Oldsmobile: “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile. It’s the new generation from Olds.” And that bombed as well.

Another example of foolish marketing rebranding was with the US Army. After McDonald’s, perhaps the most widely known marketing sloga was “Be all that you can be.” It was the motto that transformed the US Army and a theme I use to this day in speeches about individual challenge and achievement.

However, some genius decided the Army needed to rebrand itself to attract young independent-minded millennials and came up with the stupid slogan, “Army of One.” I will never forget the ad showing a kid out of uniform with no weapon, no helmet, and a rucksack running the opposite direction from the other Soldiers, tanks, and attack helicopters. I remember one senior non-commissioned officer remarking about the ad, “That boy is a deserter.” Another failed ad now replaced with the far preferable “Army Strong” motto.

So who is the genius behind the goofy-sounding “New Republican” advertisement and why would you put two fellas on camera who don’t represent anything new — heck, Jeb Bush and his Common Core is reviled across America.

When I’m out speaking I talk to people based upon principle, not party, because parties are failing the American people and are the last thing anyone should be promoting. When you speak to principles and values you connect with people.

I think we need to convey that GOP stands for Growth, Opportunity and Promise and who doesn’t want that for themselves and for their children and grandchildren? You then transition the conservative principles of limited government, fiscal responsibility, individual sovereignty, free market, strong national defense, and traditional values into effective policy aligned with the GOP theme and march on from there.

When I was in Wenatchee, Washington recently I met with a marketing executive named Bonnie Clausen and she had a very good campaign theme based on the GOP concept. She lives in Spokane and I recommend someone get in contact with her and listen.

This “New Republican” ad campaign is just plain dumb, and anyhow, what is new about Jeb Bush? At least they could have used younger people — and how about women?

Reminds me of a maxim I learned from some NCOs in the Army: “can’t fix stupid.”

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