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Blog: The fleeting appeal of Sarah Palin

November 15, 2013
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I liked Sarah Palin.

Millions of others did too.

When she appeared on the national stage five years ago, her impact was stunning.

Never had I seen an unknown public official gain such media attention.

She was energetic and very engaging, a fresh new face. Many believed Palin could make a critical difference in our affairs.

How could anyone with so little real experience and national exposure, I thought, create such an amazing splash?

It was especially impressive to see how Palin could speak so confidently and comfortably with many others.

Naturally, I wanted to know more.

Then it occurred to me, someone very much like Sarah Palin could have an immediate and critical impact on the car wash market as well.

Would this hypothetical development be a generally good thing, I wondered, for both operators and suppliers?

Moving back to the summer of 2008, as I observed Palin closer, I began to have some troubling doubts.

She was mostly about the “sizzle,” I thought, and not too much interested in preparing and delivering the finest steak.

Ultimately, I decided that her appeal to me was only superficial, and that she lacked real insight and understanding of some very critical human and national issues.

Not surprisingly, others came to a similar conclusion.

“She doesn’t take us anywhere,” veteran Republican strategist Alex Castellanos said recently of Palin’s sudden fall from grace.

Putting aside Palin’s unmistakable appeal and obvious gifts was necessary for her political party to move forward.

“Her stature will continue to diminish,” predicted Castellanos, “because she is not leading.”

What about you and your carwash?

In your market segment, would consumers consider you to be the industry leader, the “carwash of choice” in your three to five mile market?

In a competitive and fast-paced retail environment, successful business owners are very much like aspiring politicians.

Learn from Palin’s celebrated but disappointing roller coaster ride.

She may no longer be relevant in the political arena, but it clearly behooves you to seek and earn a more prominent position in your market in 2014.

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