What do patriots want for the Fourth of July

Ted MarzilliCEO YouGov Direct
June 25, 2019, 12:44 PM GMT+0

Independence Day is about to hit with a bang! You’re thinking fireworks, but we’re thinking about the marketers set to splash your screens with patriotic red, white and blue, advertisements geared toward the most patriotic American holiday.

But what do the true patriots want on this anniversary of the country’s founding?

Plan and Track data from YouGov gives us an idea, and, to be honest, it’s probably not a whole lot of hoopla. YouGov looked at individuals who said their political beliefs were “patriotic” and compared them to our nationally representative sample of Americans on their feelings about advertising, brands and issues. Our sample consisted of 2,146 people who called their political views “patriotic.”

First of all, patriots don’t like advertising all that much. They were more likely than the average American to say that they “felt bombarded by advertising” and that they “tend to mute the advertisements on tv.”

If they are going to see a bit of advertising, it better not be political or issues based. Patriots are more likely than the average American to believe that brands should be neutral. They were more likely to say they would stop buying from a brand that held a view that was opposed to theirs, more likely to say they didn’t think brands should express views on political issues, and more likely to say that brands that take a stance on political or social topics are exploiting the issue.

What Patriots do like to hear about is American made goods. This is a good opportunity for a brand to get in the mix on Fourth of July advertising with patriots. The brands that can speak to locally sourced, American made goods might catch the attention of this group. They were more likely to say that they were make sure they were well informed before making a big purchase more likely to say they like to know where their products were manufactured, and more likely to say that if they had a choice they would buy products made in their home country.

We can get a sense of what patriots did last year for the Fourth of July to help narrow opportunities for direct marketing. About 285 patriots answered our question about what they did last year for the holiday. The group wasn’t much different from the nationally represenative sample. Only two statistically significant difference existed: Patriots were more likely to have flown an American flag and to have watched a patriotic movie. Otherwise, they attended or hosted barbecues and picnics at about the same clip, watched fireworks about the same, and were equally likely to have gone to a parade.

With that information in mind, the grocery store might be the best bet for advertising or marketing that could draw in patriots. Just two grocery stores stands out among this group: Safeway and Sam’s Club.

Ad Awareness for Safeway, a chain of 895 supermarkets that has locations in 17 states, provides a statistically significant difference among patriotic shoppers (11% are aware of the chain’s ads) compared with the average American (7%). Patriots are also more likely than the average Amerian to be a Current Customer of Sam’s Club (20% of patriots vs 14% for average Americans.)

What sort of items might these patriots be shopping for? According to Plan and Track data, patriots are also more likely to be Current Customers of Diet Coke (19% for patriots vs 13% for average Americans), Ghirardelli chocolate (11% vs 6%) and Land ‘O Lakes butter (24% vs 19%).

All of these brands are American.

So the formula is simple if you want to attract patriots: don’t get political or take sides on an issue, don’t bombard them with advertising, but make sure to tell them when it’s American Made.