I suppose any second-term inauguration faces the issue of diminished enthusiasm and excitement, but the contrast between the upcoming inauguration festivities and 2009 is pretty striking. Campaign Spot reader Bruce notices this passage in an Ad Age article about Audi’s lack of interest in sponsoring events this time:
Today, though, “it’s just a different climate,” [Loren] Angelo, [general manager-brand marketing at Audi] said. For one thing, there’s not as much excitement around the promise of change as there was the first time, and for another the economic environment is such that there’s not. “We see Obama pulling back on elements of the inauguration,” he noted, pointing out that even the president himself isn’t indulging in much of the celebration there was the last time around. The President is expected to hold one consolidated ball Jan. 21 that replaces nearly a dozen separate events held in the past.
Audi doesn’t seem to be alone in feeling like Monday will bring less excitement with it than the event did four years ago. Hotels are still trying to unload the many open rooms in the city, and it’s not a good sign that tickets to the Green Inaugural Ball, a black-tie event with will.i.am and the EPA, are being hawked for a discounted price on Groupon. So far the majority of marketing tied to the event is around bar specials, such as Cityscape’s “O-Bama-Tini” cocktails, and travel packages, like the Madison Hotel’s push that partners with Brooks Brothers for a shopping spree and offers a “social-media butler” to document the event.
I understand the “O-Bama-Tini” costs more than you think and leaves you with a really intense hangover.