President Trump has a new online business called TrumpStore.com that sells all kinds of merchandise -- much of it golf-related apparel, such as polo shirts. But don’t look for many media/advertising executives to schedule a meeting to help market this effort.
All profits from TrumpStore.com go to the Trump Organization.
This new business is not be confused with the DonaldJTrump.com -- a website that sells more campaign-related merchandise: hats, mugs, beanie hats and license-plate frames. All profits are funneled to the Trump Presidential Campaign.
Merchandise sold at TrumpStore also includes baseball caps, which read "Trump" or "Trump Golf." That's versus the DonaldJTrump site baseball hats, which stamp the lingering “Make America Great Again” slogan on them. There is also a selection of Trump knit winter hats -- also with the Trump name.
Now, as with any new business, you might think this would need some marketing help, right? Wrong.
The President of the United States continues to garner big “earned” media value though all his TV/press exposure. He bucks the trend of former presidents by holding active majority stakes in businesses.
Baseball hats on the new site are priced at $35 and polo shirts at $105. High profit margins? Sure. When you have plenty of marketing awareness at your command and a bully pulpit, why not?
MediaQuant -- which calculates earned media for brands, celebrities and influencers -- says Trump pulled in $291 million in earned media value in October from TV newscast exposure, newspapers, blogs, social media and forums. Over the past 12 months, Trump has amassed $5.5 billion dollars in earned media value.
Since he has ascended to the top political job in the U.S., Trump has dismissed the idea that any conflict of interest accrues from his ongoing business interests. That thinking relies on the dubious theory that while Trump and his family will benefit, his sons are technically in control.
But think beyond this.
Who is to say more Trump businesses won’t start up during his run as president over the next three years. All looking to get the biggest bang for their buck when it comes to soaring non-paying marketing exposure?