For Herman Cain: His Run Was Net Plus for His Brand

I agree with those who say that, in the end, Herman Cain has helped his brand: he’ll probably sell more books, get higher speaking fees and most likely wind up with a national radio talk show or a big fat contract at Fox News, perhaps if Roger Ailes finally boots out the political star who disappointed and frustrated him, Sarah Palin, when her contract is up:

Rob Frankel, author of “Revenge of Brand X,” said the harassment allegations will “go away” and leave Cain with a valuable personal brand.

Cain left the Republican presidential race Saturday in the wake of multiple sexual harassment claims, as well as an allegation of a 13-year extramarital affair.

Still, the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO’s presidential run should be considered a clear success, Frankel argued.

“You take away this run and this guy wasn’t even on the radar,” he said, adding: “Everyone in this country now knows who this guy is, which helps a lot for book sales.”

..Cain’s improved name recognition in the wake of his presidential run will likely mean higher speaking fees, larger book deals, and a potentially-lucrative role on television, Frankel noted. Past and present presidential and vice presidential candidates – including Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich – have found lucrative homes on Fox News.

Cain quipped during his speech announcing the end of his campaign that he had achieved “99.9″ percent name recognition, a reference to his signature 9-9-9 tax plan.

According to Frankel, the allegations against Cain are unlikely to hurt his brand and earning power in the long run.

“As a result of dropping out, this story will just go away,” he said. “This is not a stain on a blue dress.”
He added: “Look at Eliot Spitzer. He got caught with a kinky prostitute, and he still got his own show on CNN.”

The big difference: Cain was a talk show host in Atlanta. He is the perfect embodiment of the country’s talk radio political culture which now means many politicos talk if divisive, punchy soundbytes that could have been uttered by Rush Limbaugh. But in Cain, it’s the real thing. Plus there is this: the guy clearly has charisma that reaches out and grabs you from the screen. His announcement that he was “suspending” his campaign was most marked by one characteristic: he confidently swaggered and he masterfully spun.

Perfect for his own show on Fox News — particularly if he’s allowed to prep and script. And, I predict, if he gets a national radio or TV talk show it will be a consistently highly rated one — unlike shows that featured Switzer and the doesn’t-wear-well Palin, John McCain’s dubious legacy to American’s political scene.

Cain is a Mike Huckabee waiting to happen.

Photo via Albert H. Teich / Shutterstock.com

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  • Allen

    CNN should pick up Herman Cain to counter Al Sharpton on MSNBC. CNN needs Conservative performance. I think a real right-winger on CNN would actually give CNN credibility as the Moderate persona they are trying to portray. As it is now they are wholly liberal barely disguised by just a few conservative “quips” tossed in.

    CNN is social liberal and fiscally conservative in presentation. Herman Cain could play into the Social Conservative side they sorely lack and smooth right into their fiscal conservative side.