Introduction: political marketing in the 21st century

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The Routledge Handbook of Political Marketing offers cutting-edge, fresh perspectives on how politicians, parties and governments can use political marketing to develop a more productive relationship with the public. Each chapter outlines a different topic, previous research in that area, presents new research, and then reflects on what works, the impact on politics and democracy and the way forward for research or practice. The chapters are written by leading and emerging scholars around the world, ensuring that the content is international in outlook. Aside from the worth of individual chapters, collectively this produces advice for practitioners, considerations for academics, and a sense not just of the field’s progress to date but how it may develop in future. This provides a flagship work in the field that will not only be an accessible introduction to the field but will set the direction of research in the years to come. The Handbook was guided by an editorial board whose role was to provide input such assuggestions for topics and authors, and to review submissions. They were selected because of particular expertise in a particular area of political marketing, to ensure a broad geographical spread, and their ability to provide constructive critique:Dr Ken Cosgrove (Suffolk University, US) Dr Nigel Jackson (Plymouth University, UK) Dr Alex Marland (Memorial University, Canada) Dr Roger Mortimore (Ipsos Mori, UK) Dr Robin T. Pettitt (Kingston University, UK) Dr Claire Robinson (Massey University, New Zealand) Dr Khariah Salwa-Mohktar (USM, Malaysia) Professor Jesper Strömbäck (Mid-Sweden University, Sweden)Their expertise spans market research, branding, political parties, political communication, candidate electioneering, market orientation, journalism, e-marketing, public relations, political advertising and Asian political marketing. I would like to express my thanks to the board. Not only did they read and comment on the first draft of the chapters submitted for review, but their contribution to the framework for the book, the open call for contributions, and theirsuggestions of topics and authors contributed significantly to ensuring that the handbook was groundbreaking, rather than just a summary of previous research. All chapters in this book went through three processes: submission of an initial outline, thefirst draft of the chapter in October 2010, and the second draft at the end of February 2011. Authors were both invited individually to submit an outline, and to respond to an open advertisement via Professor Phil Harris’s mailing list and the Political Marketing Group. Initially over 30 chapters were invited to proceed to first draft, with the overall process resulting in 27 chapters. All chapters were required to follow the set structure, so that the sum of the book would be greater than the parts. I would like to record my thanks to authors for not only their hard work but the quality and originality of content, and their appropriate response to review comments. I would also like to thank Routledge for the opportunity to edit this handbook, and forpossessing a both practical and intellectual vision that now is the right time not just for a textbook such as Political Marketing: Principles and Application, but for a new handbook in political marketing. The Handbook is divided into five sections (see Figure 1.1). Part I, on understanding themarket, gathering ideas and debate, discusses a range of market research methods, including polling, focus groups, segmentation, voter selection and targeting, but also deliberation and co-creation; more importantly, how they are or could be used in politics. Part II, on product development, branding and strategy, explores market orientation, niche marketing and political branding. Part III, on internal marketing, considers relationship marketing and direct marketing to members and volunteers, marketing fundraising, and the role of party officials in political marketing. Part IV, on communicating and connecting with the public, explores changes in marketing over time, the branding and positioning of candidates, populism and marketing, political communication in elections, how leaders can interact with voters, political public relations, and short-and long-term online relationships. Part V, on government marketing – delivery, policy and leadership, discusses delivering in government, how governments use public opinion research, the use of marketing by interest groups, branding public policy and making space for leadership. The concluding chapter sets out new directions in political marketing practice, discusses political marketing and democracy, and outlines future trends in political marketing research and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Political Marketing
EditorsJennifer Lees-Marshment
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages3
ISBN (Electronic)9781136597442, 9780203349908
ISBN (Print)9780415579933
Publication statusPublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Economics,Econometrics and Finance
  • General Business,Management and Accounting
  • General Social Sciences


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