Obama has made American brands more popular

Stephan Shakespeare
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ACCORDING to the Nobel citation, President Obama deserved the Nobel Prize for Peace because of his &ldquo;extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples&rdquo;. Was it an absurd award, or a prescient one? Has Obama made America more popular? We have in the past used BrandIndex as a subliminal measure of America&rsquo;s popularity &ndash; it seemed worth trying again.<br /><br />We looked at the Index scores for two sets of brands easily identified by their national heritage. It was difficult to find exact pairs, and I don&rsquo;t claim that they are equivalents, but we normally see relative stability across sectors and would expect the average scores to remain steady relative to each other if there was no cultural effect. The US brands were: Google, Jeep, Coca-Cola, American Express, Gap, McDonalds, Exxon, American Airlines. The UK brands were Range <br /><br />Rover, Cadbury, JD Wetherspoons, BA, Ribena, WH Smith, BP, Barclaycard. The graph plots the aggregate of the US scores relative to the UK scores. As can be seen, it appears that the US brands do indeed rise strongly relative to their UK basket as Obama first becomes a realistic prospect for President, and again as with the excitement of the inauguration. Since then, the lift has been maintained.<br /><br /><strong>DAILYPOLLING</strong><br />So what did we learn from the three-week experiment in daily political polling? All three parties got a boost in their popularity during their own conference, with Labour and the Liberal Democrats going straight back down again afterwards &ndash; and I suspect the Conservatives will do the same. For Labour, that&rsquo;s terrible news: trailing badly and running out of opportunities to turn things around, they needed something special. Every missed chance brings them another step closer to defeat. The inbuilt advantage of the constituency boundaries, which mean that on level-pegging Labour are comfortably the largest party, may not be enough to save them.<br /><br />Stephan Shakespeare is co-founder and chief innovation officer of polling firm YouGov