Donald Trump likes to talk and tweet — a lot. While Mr. Trump has the constitutionally protected right to say pretty much whatever he pleases, the issue from a marketing perspective is whether he has damaged his personal brand to the point that companies such as Macy's and NBC should do a cost/benefit analysis of continuing their business relationships with "The Donald."
That question, at least from the point of view of Macy's, may soon be answered as over 462,000 individuals (as of 8:30 a.m. ET today), have signed a MoveOn.org petition calling on the department store chain to part ways with Mr. Trump for engaging in "unpleasant, nasty and despicable behavior." The complaint lists sexist behavior, denial of climate change and Mr. Trump's "birther" crusade against President Obama. Interestingly, the petition did not refer to Mr. Trump's call on Twitter for a "revolution" in the U.S. due to his unhappiness with the results of last week's election.
The dump Trump movement appears to have reached final straw status with an apparent nod in a Macy's commercial to his birther activities. In the spot, Mr. Trump is seen asking the actor Edmund Gwenn (Kris Kringle in Miracle on 34th Street) if he is the real Santa while tugging on his beard.
The petition asserts that Macy's is not following its own policy of being a socially responsible company "with a belief that actions speak louder than words" by continuing to sell fragrances and ties fronted by Mr. Trump.
How much does a business relationship with Donald Trump help or hurt Macy's image in the eyes of the public?