“The Democrats are the party of government activism, the party that says government can make you richer, smarter, taller, and get the chickweed out of your lawn.
“Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work, and then get elected and prove it."
– P.J. O’Rourke
Dear Business Builder,
When I launched The Total Package, I made a rule: I would studiously avoid discussing religion and politics in my articles.
This week – to prove that I am neither disciplined nor all that smart – I’ve decided to throw the rulebook out the window and write a little bit about politics …
Before I begin, a quick disclaimer:
This is not about which party or ideology is right or wrong. I have my own very strong opinions and so, I suspect, do you. And since my opinions tend to be – as The Redhead diplomatically puts it – “friggin' outrageous,” I would not dream of burdening you with them.
So this article isn’t about you or me. It’s about our prospects … what many of them are probably thinking and feeling about the current state of affairs in America … and how understanding those resident emotions can help you create promotions that speak to them in a spectacularly compelling way.
Meet Our Prospect
The industries I specialize in – personal finance, investment and alternative health – were created by conservatives and libertarians for conservatives and libertarians.
No, not “librarians” – libertarians: Folks who tend to be conservative on fiscal issues (taxing and spending) and liberal on social issues (personal liberty and equality – as in “Of course gays should be allowed to marry; why should straight folks be the only ones to suffer?”).
When you’re talking to one of these “conservatarian” prospects, you’re talking to someone who’s convinced that neither big government nor the equally big and corrupt medical industry can be trusted with their wealth or their health – and who believe the only way to improve their lives is to do it themselves.
Why are these prospects so bent on self-sufficiency? Well, if you’re one of them, you’ll say it’s because they know their history … understand how things really work … and follow the news more closely than the average guy.
If you’re not one of them, you’ll probably just say it’s because they’re closed-minded dinosaurs who couldn’t recognize a great new idea if it bit them on the keester (which, according to our prospects, most “great new ideas” have, in fact, done).
Whatever the reason for these prospects’ conservatarian bent, they take their politics seriously – and are precisely 78.9% more likely than the average American to be found yelling expletives and/or throwing a brick at the TV set during the evening news.
Furthermore, most of these prospects are older and more affluent than the average American. The majority are male. They’re more likely to belong to a fundamentalist religious sect. And more than 90% of them are both white and straight.
Yep, that’s right: Rich, old, angry, fundamentalist, straight, white guys.
Who probably can’t dance.
And there are three more things to know about these guys:
- They’re readers – so they’re more likely to read your promotion and more likely to buy and use an information product than the average bear – and …
- They tend to be more direct-response active – more likely to purchase a “how-to” book, newsletter, conference or course from a print ad, direct mail package or Internet promo.
- Their ranks are growing by leaps and bounds – and in the years ahead, the explosion in the number of these rich, old, angry straight white guys in America is going to be mind-boggling.
How do I know? Well for one thing, this whole country is growing older. Fast.
The oldest baby boomer in America is now 61. The youngest? 43. And in-between, a staggering 75.8 million people; more than one in every four Americans, the greatest demographic bulge in US history … are marching – credit cards in hand – into seniorship.
And have you noticed? As most people age, they tend to grow increasingly conservative in terms of their values, lifestyle, finances and political views. Heck. Even Winston Churchill once recognized this by saying, “Any man who is under 30, and is not a liberal, has no heart; and any man who is over 30, and is not a conservative, has no brains.”
… But why are they so angry?
Well, for one thing, President Bush and the Republicans screwed, blued and tattooed ‘em.
Sure: They got their tax cut, and many of them still support the war – but remember: These folks are fiscal conservatives. And the Republicans have spent so much more than they took in since 2000, the “official” federal debt now stands at a staggering $8.7 trillion.
But that’s just the official number – all gussied up in ways that would get a corporate accountant sentenced to life. Throw in the unfunded liabilities of Social Security and Medicare, and Washington now owes some $50 trillion more than it can pay.
Fifty trillion dollars: Lay that many $1 bills end-to-end, and they’ll stretch on for some 4.7 billion miles.
That’s enough to encircle the equator 197,285 times … or span the distance to the moon 19,822 times … or to the sun about 51 times!
Now, put yourself in these prospects’ shoes for a moment …
After eight years of Bill Clinton, you finally got your wish in 2000: The White House, Senate and House of Representatives, all in Republican hands, and guaranteed years to cut spending and shrink the government!
But instead of attacking waste and cutting idiotic federal programs, Washington Republicans actually managed to make Clinton and the Democrats look conservative– by adding a whopping $1.6 billion a day to the national debt.
Now being fiscally conservative, our prospect knows that historically, when the national debt skyrockets, the value of the U.S. dollar – their U.S. dollars – inevitably falls like a rock.
That means the spending power of their money shrinks. Their cost of living rises. And anyone living on a fixed income – such as prospects who have already retired – lives less well with each passing year.
Are you beginning to get a sense of the sense of betrayal, disgust and anger these prospects feel?
Wait – as they say – there’s more. Much, MUCH more …
There’s An 800-Pound Gorilla in the Room
… And Her Name’s NANCY PELOSI!
Let’s face it; to our prospects, the new Speaker of the house makes V.I. Lenin look like a dyed-in-the-wool conservative. After all – this is a woman who wakes up every morning thinking San Francisco is normal!
Now, I’m not saying that’s a good thing or a bad thing; it’s just a “thing.”
And the other thing is, Nancy, and Hillary, and Charlie Rangel, and John Kerry, and Teddy Kennedy and the rest of the Dems have plans – and they’re not exactly shy about telling our prospect what they’d like to do to him:
- Since he’s probably in the top 5% of income-earners, they want to raise his income tax rate. To help subsidize Social Security, they’d also like to increase his FICA “contributions.” Is it any wonder he suspects it’s only a matter of time until they raise taxes on his capital gains and dividends?
- They want to throw a bone to their environmentalist supporters by limiting oil exploration … imposing windfall profit taxes on oil companies … and regulating how he uses energy – moves he’s sure will send the price he pays for a fill-up and to heat his home sky-high.
- They want to impose a national health insurance plan that he’s convinced will limit his treatment options and damage the quality of care he receives. Plus, several Dems have said they want to regulate prescription drug prices which he’s sure will decrease the amount of research and the number of new drugs being developed.
- And if the recent actions of liberals in Europe and the UK, the United Nations and even our own Food and Drug Administration are any indication, they also aim to deprive him of his right to use nutritional supplements to prevent or treat his ailments.
Now remember: These are actual proposals that have already been advanced by Democrats in Washington – and that our prospect sees being sold on TV every single night.
Also, please remember that for our purposes, it doesn’t matter who’s right or who’s wrong. All that matters is that our prospect is painfully aware of every one of these proposals … is convinced that they threaten his wealth and health … and believes that since nobody in Washington seems to care about his wealth or his health as much as he does, he’s on his own.
In 2007, promotions in the health and wealth markets that key in on this disgust, anger and fear will lead the pack.
If you’re creating promotions in these niches, you’re talking to guys who feel betrayed by the Republicans – and as though the Democrats have just hung a big, fat target on their backs.
And your prospect isn’t just furious at the Republicans and/or the Democrats. He’s fed up with the whole stinking establishment.
He’s angry and scared.
He needs the cathartic experience of having his frustration, anger and fear put into words.
He needs practical, how-to- help to insulate himself from the onslaught.
And he’s willing to pay to get it.
… Any takers?
Hope this helps!
Yours for Bigger Winners, More Often,
Publisher & Editor
THE TOTAL PACKAGE
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