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What Do Campaign Playlists Have To Do With Authentic Marketing?

woman listening to music representing authentic marketing

What Do Campaign Playlists Have To Do With Authentic Marketing?

More than you might expect (and before you click away… this is absolutely NOT in ANY WAY a political post… stick with me).


I was listening to The Daily podcast while en route taking my little Lexi to her vet appointment this week and the show title was, What the 2020 Campaign Sounds Like.

When the show’s host, Michael Barbaro asked reporter Astead Herndon why he zeroed in on music to discuss the campaign he responded with,

When we think about political campaigns, essentially, they are stories, and the candidates are trying to tell the public a story about themselves and about what they can provide to that voter’s life, and they do that in a lot of ways. They do that through policies. They do that by touting their experience. But they also do that by trying to evoke a certain emotion, and that often has happened through music.

Even though I’m all about making emotional connections and storytelling, I was half-heartedly listening as Herndon talked about how the various campaigns throughout the ’50s and ’60s used music to educate their audience.  But then the word “authenticity” was dropped and I turned the volume up.


Turns out every candidate, regardless of their political affiliation and/or policy views, uses carefully curated playlists to authentically represent who they are as “real people” to their audience.  This concept resonates with me because our music taste is so personal.  I think it pulls back the curtain a bit on their personalities and shares a more realistic view of who they are as real people, not just candidates.

Aretha Franklin, Kanye West, Beyonce, Lynard Skynard…  and pretty much everything in between.  Want to see and hear what the candidates are playing?  Check out The Daily’s podcast episode here or read the New York Times article here to see what each candidate has on their playlist(enhance the experience by making sure your sound is on).

“The merging of your political identity and a cultural identity only works if the public thinks it’s an authentic thing.” excerpt from The Daily Podcast, episode “What the 2020 Campaign Sounds Like”


The best part of the whole podcast was when they spoke about the difference between Obama in the 2008 election and Clinton in 2016.  They were both doing dance moves like “the Whip and the Nae Nae” on the campaign trail.  For Obama, it helped him connect with people, but not for Clinton.

Herndon states, “I remember still talking to black voters — I was out in Baltimore, and they bring that up as a sign that Democrats were pandering to black voters and not necessarily doing an explicit reach-out.”

“Barack Obama did dance moves all the time. The difference between one candidate and the other is the feeling that it is authentic to their selves and that it is something that you can really believe coming from them.

What??  People are smart enough to tell when you’re being inauthentic?  Who knew? (this is my version of midwestern sarcasm, in case you didn’t know).  Authentic marketing matters.  Even in presidential campaigns.



It shows up loud and clear in digital marketing.  I can’t tell you how many times I see businesses use images or language that are not in alignment with their brand personality, products, and services.

We’ve all seen it and it looks like this:

  • Instead of posting a real image of you or something related to your business you choose a generic stock photo
  • Instead of typing like you talk you filter your messaging so it sounds robotic, formal or stuffy
  • Instead of sharing your own thoughts on important topics relevant to your audience you share articles and quotes you found somewhere else without comment
  • Instead of connecting and engaging with your audience 80% of the time lacing in the occasional promotion of your products and services, you do the opposite.
  • Instead of highlighting your sense of humor through your copy you share cartoons
  • Instead of crafting images that are congruent with your brand colors, font and voice you share or copy something someone else has done
  • Instead of sharing parts of your life and business that is real you hide behind teaching and selling
  • Instead of speaking directly to your ideal clients through what you post and share you’re speaking to everyone

… You get the idea.


It’s not an authentic way of marketing and people will not connect with what you’re saying and doing.

When you do any of the things mentioned above you rob your audience from knowing you… your business…  AND what you have to offer.

You don’t have time for that.  The world needs more you.

You CAN make a difference for your ideal client. You can help them achieve results that will transform their life and/or business.  But none of that matters if those people you are trying to attract aren’t connecting with what you’re posting and sharing on social media, your blogs, and your freebies.


Be authentic.  It’s that simple.

Here’s how to authentically market:

  • Share more of you, your life and your business
  • Tell the story behind why you do what you do
  • Post about your challenges and successes as a business owner
  • Be consistent in your brand colors, fonts and messaging
  • Speak directly to your ideal client… It’s cheaper than ads
  • Choose images and graphics that are in alignment with how you want people to feel when they see it
  • Find your brand voice and be consistent
  • Share your thoughts and feelings when you post or share something online
  • Share more of your personality… it’s okay to be funny, quirky, bold, etc

I promise that if you commit to doing these things consistently you’ll attract and engage with people who are likeminded and need you in their life.  You will find that authentic marketing will feel good, be much easier to do and is affordable.


All this talk about authenticity and playlists has me thinking…  If you thought about your business like a campaign what songs would you pick to let the world know who you are and what you’re about?

Me?  My Authenticity Champion Playlist would look something like this:

Mindy Altermatt with earbuds in authentic marketing

  1. This Is Me -Keala Settle, The Greatest Showman Ensemble
  2. Ain’t Got Far To Go – Jess Glynne
  3. Masterpiece – Jessie J
  4. Be Love – Satsung & Tubby Love
  5. Unwritten – Natasha Bedingfield
  6. Girl On Fire – Alicia Keys
  7. What Makes You Beautiful – One Direction
  8. Born This Way – Lady Gaga
  9. Can’t Hold Us – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
  10. Good Rain – Trever Hall
  11. Brave – Sara Bareilles
  12. I’m Alive – Michael Franti & Spearhead
  13. Life Is Beautiful – Keb’ Mo
  14. Change – Charlie Puth & James Taylor
  15. Good Will Prevail – Griz


cover of Unlock YOU Secret to more Authentic Marketing

The world is craving more authenticity.

It’s time to kick your imposter and your fear to the curb and start showing up like the freakin’ supernova you were meant to be.

If you need some help getting started I’ve created the Unlock YOUR Secret To More Authentic Marketing Guide to walk you through the process.

It’s free and is a helpful resource.  Click on the image to the left or Click here to get your copy.

To your success!

PS…  I’d love to see what’s on YOUR playlist!  Post a few song titles in the comments below that would represent YOUR  campaign authentically:-)





August 24, 2019

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