By Quentin Fottrell
Republicans watch Fox. Democrats watch PBS. But they both love Cheerios — and Clorox.
Liberals and conservatives don’t agree on much lately. But whether clothes get stained red or blue, members of both parties reach for the Clorox, according to a new poll of 5,000 people carried out by marketing research group YouGov BrandIndex. Clorox is among the few brand beloved by both parties.
Democrats and Republicans both think highly of the Discovery Channel, Johnson & Johnson, Cheerios, and The History Channel, the survey says. For the second year in a row, Republicans rank Fox News Channel and Democrats rank Google as their No. 1 brand. (Fox is owned by News Corp., the parent company of Dow Jones, which also owns SmartMoney.com.) Republicans like Craftsman tools (No. 4), while Democrats like Sony (No. 4). Do Republicans make things, while Democrats play video games?
What does it all mean? Do the brands that we choose define the place we want to take in the world? Should we read into the fact that Democrats say they wear Levis (No. 9) while Republicans like M&Ms (No. 10.) And where’s Apple? “It’s not quite as pervasive a brand yet,” says Drew Kerr, spokesman for YouGov BrandIndex. “That exclusion is extraordinarily odd,” says Robert Passikoff, the founder and president of another marketing company, Brand Key.
Favorite Democratic brands:
3. Discovery Channel.
5. Johnson & Johnson.
Favorite Republican brands:
1. Fox News Channel.
3. The History Channel.
5. Johnson & Johnson.
(Brands favored by Independents had a mixture of both Republican and Democratic choices, except they also rated John Deere in their list.)
Experts say it’s also a way of telling the world what kind of consumer you are. “No one sees you use Google and yet, for Democrats at least, you want to be the kind of guy who does,” says Matt Wallaert, social and behavior psychologist of digital strategy firm Churnless.com. Why so? “It shows you are smart, tech-savvy and comfortable in an increasingly digital world.” Wallaert says the picks may not reflect reality 100%, but they are nevertheless interesting for that reason alone. For instance, he does wear Levis. “As a brand, it says I’m young, casual and sort of rugged cowboy-ish.”