The Concept of MAGA
Every American citizen has recently come across the words ‘MAGA’ either directly or indirectly. Quite a number of people let the words pass them by, while others already have an updated understanding alongside the implication and history of the word.
While the aim of this article is to portray the effectiveness of the strategic branding method used in making the idea more prominent among people, it is important to briefly delve into the history of the concept.
MAGA; Making America Great Again, is a political slogan that has been powerfully publicized and branded over the years. It may come as a shock that the slogan did not start with Trump. Before Trump made it a familiar slogan, Alexander Wiley, during the 1940 Presidential election, emphasized that the one hundred and thirty million Americans (at that time), should vote a leader who could provide them morale and vision in order to “Make America Great Again.”.
Barry Goldwater used the same phase some 24 years after Alexander, during some of his campaign in 1964, (which he later lost). Other people who have used the phrase include; Ronald Regan, Steven Armstrong and Bill Clinton.
While the idea greatly influenced peoples’ decision toward the political future of America, it has mysteriously worked to garner huge political support to the user. All thanks to an accompanying branding system.
Great men have said that anything is marketable, as long as it is well branded. Trump’s idea about Making America Great Again during the 2016 presidential campaign did not attain that height of wide acceptance among the people by sheer coincidence. It took the effort of many men and women to achieve such a great feat. Most of the effort however was expelled on the branding strategy.
On the streets of the country, (around the campaign period) a million people wore red caps bearing the expression; Make America Great Again. The expression was written in conspicuous white scripts. The cap became a common attire during the campaign that saw to a successful election of Donald Trump in 2016. While more than a million copies went into production by the original master minds of the political strategy, tens of million copies more were being printed through counterfeit sources. There is an implication to the fake production; it clearly signified the massive extent of acceptance among the people.
Donald Trump made it explicitly clear that there were ten counterfeit production of the caps produced for every original copy. Such a massive popularity, any observer would say.
Before we examine the color concept and why people were not left with much choice when the brand was introduced, it is important to study the concept of the fonts used in the designs and presentation of the word; MAGA.
Those who are very familiar with the time, of these events, will remember the popular poster with a conspicuous ‘TRUMP’ written above, while the slogan ‘Make America Great Again’ sat beneath the name. All these strategies had their psychological implication in the minds of the voters. We shall examine these implications quickly.
Font Implication and Analysis
For any successful branding, there must be two essential factors; an intelligent combination of colors, and a perfect blend of relevant fonts. Note that there were three prominent displays used in publicizing the slogan;
The first of these bore the official topography of the logo, it involves plain blue texts; MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! Written in blue and placed on a clean white background with parallel lines at the top and base of the design. The double lined parallel lines are spaced with five wine-colored stars both above and beneath, as shown in the picture below.
The second display of the ‘MAGA’ logo itself includes a blue rectangle. Within this shape is a transparent but wine-colored rectangle outline. In the center of this, the word TRUMP was written, while the slogan came right below the name, ending with an exclamation sign. Meanwhile, all texts in the logo wore white scripts, as pictured below.
The last display used, which is in fact more popular than the first, is the red cap. As you may observe in the picture below, the popular red cap, worn by several citizens is embroidered with the texts in white.
The official logo combines a number of fonts. Basically, the letters MAKE, GREAT and AGAIN are very close to the Montserrat font, while AMERICA is written in Century Schoolbook. The design though, is a lot more than the basic font types; there are alterations to these fonts at various edges so that a replication of the brand is not easily achieved.
A close look and one would see that there is no kerning in the letters I,C and C,A in the font used to write America.
On the cap, the alteration of the fonts is in fact clearer. The font looks close to Century Schoolbook, but with the inconsistency of some of the letters, it triggers deeper consideration. Look closely for inconsistencies in the font style of words in the picture above.
You’d observe that there is a spur one of the letters ‘G’, the first letter ‘G’ does not have the same spur at all, unlike the second letter. You can also see the spaces between the letters are not regular, for instance the last two letters of the last word are deliberately given more space between them.
Many however, claim that the caps they got from the White House gift shop are not all alike. It may then seem that the designers of the caps weren’t after any particular specifics over the brand. Clearly, their indifference unconsciously made a brand out of the slogan and strategy.
The Color Psychology
Colors are essential parts of the messages delivered in any branding attempt. The colors of the MAGA brand are simply white, blue and red. All of which consistently vary from a different hue to the other or from a different saturation to the other. The variety within the three colors gives mood to the display in any context.
The first thing to consider is the fact that the colors are the same with the American flag. Naturally, using the same colors as the legendary flag draws attention to the slogan. Americans are intrigued and inclined toward any brand that portrays a semblance of the country’s flag.
In more practical terms, the white color generally depicts purity and innocence. Upon sight, the color appeals to a vast majority as it speaks peace to their minds from the distance.
The color red shows hardiness and valor. This shows that, while the bearer is promising a peaceful season, the people can be sure that he will do anything to guard the country against unfriendly forces. The red shows that he is indeed capable of that.
Lastly, blue signifies a variety of feelings, including; justice, fairness and consciousness of action.
The MAGA brand, through its colors, simply says; “While we promise you peace, we would be strict enough to sustain the peace. We’d fight off all enemies standing in the way. This will be done in order to maintain the promised peaceful state, as we know not everyone is interested in our peacekeeping. While carrying out this duty, we shall likewise make sure that there is equity, equality and fairness in the land.
Without any doubt, people read these in the colors presented them by the MAGA slogan, and they massively bought into the dream.
Effects on the Current State of Affairs
Following recent outcomes, the slogan ‘Make America Great Again’, despite the unsuccessful re-election campaign of Trump, still has a great, but quite purported effect on the country’s state of affairs. The stance of opposition, which had consistently identified a close relationship between the MAGA ideas eventually tilting toward racism, is now being aired and accepted by a growing number of the population.
Very recently, a viral video of high school teens, showing the kids mocking a drumming and singing American Indian man has become one of the pivotal interpretations of the MAGA slogan. The video showed the boys wearing MAGA caps, which shows they are supporters of Trump. The display among many other erratic actions nationwide, have now been seen as the new meaning given to the slogan ‘MAGA’.
Emphasis have shifted from the initial notion of MAGA seeing as a representation of a tranquil state to Trump’s bigoted rhetoric, hatred (or dislike) for the Mexican migrants, and his claims about the preceding President not being ‘fully’ American. These have now become the new interpretation of the slogan.
The division caused by the many interpretations and misinterpretations have played roles in the recent topsy-turvy waves that wacked the political atmosphere of the country.
Beyond all reasonable doubt, Make America Great Again has quickly become offensive to many ears, especially with half the country believing that recent uproars were incited by President Trump.
Rather than clamoring to Make America Great Again, the recent call is then how to ‘Make America Better’.