Donald Trump as a brand has been quite successful. Not only has he made a mark through his vast real estate empire, but his boisterous personality has endeavored him to success in reality TV and other enterprises. That being said, his recent foray into the political sphere has shown how, per “The Coherence Premium”, expanding beyond your capabilities system and product and service fit can prove to be disastrous for your company.
Though Trump has the funding and platform to stage a presidential campaign, as he has been questioned on issues of national importance, the responses he’s given and the resulting feedback from business partners have had ripple effects across his business units. His derogatory comments towards Mexican immigrants during his presidential announcement resulted in NBC terminating their agreement to air the Miss USA pageant that Trump owns and removing him from “The Apprentice” show, effecting his personal brand successes. Additionally in his real estate ventures, several restaurant agreements in newly developed properties were terminated because the chefs’ values did not align with the statements.
In an effort to expand into politics for the satisfaction of his own personal ambitions, Trump has entered into a field where, despite current poll numbers, it is unlikely that he will be successful or able to compete in the long run. As a result, he’s damaged his successes in areas where he had a competitive advantage-real estate and entertainment. While some entertainers have been successful in transitioning to politics (Sen. Al Franken is a great example), it has taken tact to make inroads in the establishment, and Trump will say what he thinks and does not back down from criticism. Trumps recent comments about Sen. Jon McCain have turned other republican candidates and party members against him, if they weren’t already there, and further damaged his prospect for success. At this point, it seems unlikely that Trump will be able to earn the Republican nomination. In his effort to try, he has created strategic incoherence for his brand, and will likely struggle to fully recover from the gaffes and missteps he is making on the campaign trail.