Political marketing and management in the 2017 New Zealand Election reveals the market research, strategy, branding and communication behind the unpredictable 2017 New Zealand election result which saw Jacinda Ardern elected Labour leader just 8 weeks before the election to become Prime Minister. Utilising rich data sources that include a 250,000 Vote Compass survey and interviews with key political advisors, it explores  the alignment of the policy of National, Labour, the Greens and NZ First with party supporters, demographic segments and undecided voters. It also analyses the leadership communication and branding of the leaders Bill English, Jacinda Ardern and Andrew Little, as well as the advertising by minor parties ACT, the Greens, United Future and the Maori Party. The book provides advice for practitioners, such as: focus on being responsive, communicate delivery competence, differentiate in policy and advertising, build an energetic and charismatic leader brand and be flexible when planning.

Sources used in the research include:

  • Quantitative Vote Compass survey data with 251,364 unique respondents during the election.
  • 24,000+ respondent Vote Compass Post-election survey.
  • Qualitative interviews with nine senior practitioners.
  • Qualitative analysis of over 1000 primary sources, including videos, photographs, speeches, policies, press releases, election billboards, media reports and leaders debates, as well as public market research and media interviews.

Accessing the book

The e-book is available from https://www.palgrave.com/gp/book/9783319942971 and individual chapters are available from https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-94298-8_1

Reports for practitioners are available here.


  1. Introduction: Political Marketing and Management in New Zealand Jennifer Lees-Marshment Pages 1-5
  2. Vote Compass NZ 2017: Marketing Insights into Public Views on Policy and Leaders Jennifer Lees-Marshment, Edward Elder, Lisa Chant, Danny Osborne, Justin Savoie, Clifton van der Linden Pages 7-22
  3. Political Parties and Their Customers: The Alignment of Party Policies with Supporter, Target and Undecided Market Preferences Jennifer Lees-Marshment, Edward Elder, Lisa Chant, Danny Osborne, Justin Savoie, Clifton van der Linden Pages 23-41
  4. Messy Marketing in the 2017 New Zealand Election: The Incomplete Market Orientation of the Labour and National Parties Jennifer Lees-Marshment Pages 43-65
  5. Candidate Brand Personality and the 2017 New Zealand General Election James Barrett Pages 67-84
  6. Minor Party Campaign Advertising: A Market-Oriented Assessment Claire Robinson Pages 85-98
  7. Communicating Market-Oriented Leadership in Power and Opposition Edward Elder Pages 99-115
  8. Conclusion: Political Marketing and Management Lessons for Research and Practice Jennifer Lees-Marshment Pages 117-137
  9. Back Matter Pages 139-158 – Vote Compass 2017 Core Reports – free download https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/bbm%3A978-3-319-94298-8%2F1.pdf

Individual chapters available from https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-94298-8_1

Whole e-book available from https://www.palgrave.com/gp/book/9783319942971 or https://www.palgrave.com/us/book/9783319942971