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On the eve of the next US presidential debate, and a few days after the proverbial dust has settled from the vice presidential debate, let’s look at the two candidates relative to what makes a brand believable and authentic. BrandCredible™ is a term I use to refer to brand attributes that engender such qualities as trust, loyalty, and even respect.

Before continuing, I'll share one holistic definition of a brand: A person, place, product, service or organization that embodies tangible and intangible elements which contribute to experiences, feelings, and perceptions of those that interact with it.

Admittedly, the only thing branding professionals can do is to influence and help move a brand closer to where we would like it to be — credibly, honestly.

A credible brand must walk the talk. This means an individual must be who he/she says in any forum. You can’t claim one thing to one audience, and then be another in a different setting. You can’t have one set of principles for others and then toss those out when it comes to yourself, family, friends, and your "inner circle" of whatever sort.

After years of running ReBrand and the ReBrand 100 Global Awards, we developed a list of 20 rebranding mistakes to be avoided. (You can download the full list from ). Considering the VP debate through the lens of mistake number seven, which candidate is more believable than the other? Here’s what that specific mistake stipulates (substitute "brand" for the term "rebrand" below for the sake of this post):

7. The rebrand lacks credibility or is a superficial facelift. The rebrand’s story must be believable given the existing brand experience and customer perception. It must also hold credibility internally. If employees who live the brand day-to-day don’t believe, the target audience won't either.

The political equivalent could be:
The VP (insert the actual name of a candidate here if you’d like) lacks credibility or is a superficial facelift. Is there transparency, a proven track record that rings true? Or is there more hype than substance? Consider their staff, the citizens of Delaware and Alaska, the nation, foreign leaders and countries and how they may feel about their achievements, record, leadership, and future potential. Do these group see one as helping mitigate their respective "pain points" in any way? 

Which brand is more credible given what we have actually experienced prior to, during, and even after the debate?


Anaezi Modu, Founder
ReBrand and the ReBrand 100 Global Awards

Recognizing and showcasing the world's
most effective brand transformations.