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UT expert: Clinton visit likely to temporarily boost Maumee Chipotle business

Hillary Clinton’s recent visit to Chipotle in Maumee brought national media attention to northwest Ohio. Commentary on Clinton’s fiscal policy, the driving theme behind her Presidential campaign and even an examination of what she ordered – a chicken burrito bowl – have appeared on numerous news broadcasts, web sites and blogs.

“Hillary Clinton is something of a pop culture icon, and the attention surrounding her visit increases awareness of the restaurant and creates a great deal of excitement,” said Dr. Ainsworth Bailey, associate professor of marketing at The University of Toledo. “We like to tell ourselves that we aren’t impacted by the habits of celebrities but the truth is, we are. If we weren’t, celebrity endorsements of brands and events would not exist.”

Celebrities, athletes and politicians alike have long been tied to the fashion, beauty and food industries whether as paid or, in the case of Clinton, accidental brand ambassadors.

“I think any kind of “celebrity effects,” in terms of increased visits, would be limited to the Maumee store, so people would be more likely to want to shop there as opposed to others in the Toledo area,” Bailey said. “Those who may not have been aware that there was a Chipotle in Maumee now know, and can visit.”

Bailey also explained how Clinton’s visit could be polarizing for some, due to political dynamics. It will increase interest for certain groups, and negatively impact others.

“I do not think there is going to be a sustained “Clinton effect,” though. However, if Hillary Clinton were to become President, the Maumee store could actually capitalize on that. ‘Congrats to the first female President. Thanks for having stopped in!’”


is UT's Media Relations Specialist. Contact her at 419.530.2077 or
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