Queen Elizabeth II has just issued a ban on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Not one in the sense that they’re exiled from returning back to the United Kingdom, but that they are no longer allowed to use the name ‘Sussex Royal’.
Why does this matter you may ask? Well, the branding that Prince Harry and Meghan have gone through to make it a success have been years in the making, not to mention the large sums of money which have been put into it. But does it really matter, though?
According to a report by the Daily Mail on Tuesday, Queen Elizabeth II had decided it was improper for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to use the word ‘royal’ in their branding ventures. This was, of course, after the queen had ‘lengthy and complex’ talks about the issue.
But again, why is this even newsworthy? Well, an insider shared the implications of the branding ban. “Harry and Meghan have spent tens of thousands of pounds on a new Sussex Royal website to complement their hugely popular Instagram feed.” This in itself is costly, as social media platforms pay people for certain branding, and the use of ‘royal’ certainly would favor higher payouts.
The source also shared, “They have also sought to register Sussex Royal as a global trademark for a range of items and activities, including clothing, stationery, books, and teaching materials.” Furthemore, the couple’s charitable foundation, ‘Sussex Royal, The Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’, uses the now-banned word.
On the surface, this issue seems to be nothing but more than a semantics problem. However, the connotations that the word ‘royal’ has in regards to branding and how that branding is received does make a difference to the bottom line. But for Prince Harry and Meghan, does it really matter?
The short answer is yes, but no. It matters because again, it cuts into what the couple has been working on for several years, including their monetary investments into building the brand. It’s also a problem because Prince Harry and Meghan will have to go through the process of having everything changed, provided they can come up with a new and effective brand name.
Looking at the bigger picture, though, no simple word, regardless of its branding potential, is going to derail the Duke and Duchess of Sussex from reaching their goals of developing financial independence from the crown, one of their main reasons for relinquishing their roles as senior members of the royal family. It’s simply not. The couple has way too much going for them at the moment.
With the types of offers that the couple is receiving, their brand and charitable organization may be taking a back seat. According to one agency in the United States, Markle’s offers alone total over $100 million, should she decide to accept them all.
And Prince Harry recently spoke at a JP Morgan event in Miami, Florida, garnering the couple a nice payout of one million dollars. On top of that, it’s also been reported that Goldman Sachs is in conversations with Prince Harry regarding taking a role within the multinational investment bank.
So, to answer the question, does it really matter that the queen has banned the couple’s use of the word ‘royal’ in their brand? If we’re being honest, no, no it doesn’t.