28 December 2015 - 09:15, by Medialore LLC
To Google, Apple, Starbucks, Uber and all the other leading innovative branding leaders around, the marketers at Medialore commend you for publicly voicing a stance on touchy social and political issues headlining 2015. Often sparking controversial dialogue and highly-scrutinized press coverage, campaigns backing the legalization of gay marriage or immigration reform could have easily spiraled into a vicious backlash of disgruntled customers.
A risk none of you had to take but many of you did. After all, with millions of loyal customers already consuming services and goods, what’s the point of injecting your brand into a controversial cause that has nothing to do with your company or its bottom line earnings?
However, great brands like yours understands that customer loyalty is built on a bold brand identity. People are loyal to what they believe in and can relate to. Supporting majority belief on causes that often headline the news will ultimately cause a headline in it of itself. This is when the media validates and spreads your socially conscious brand identity.
In understanding and applying this concept, its no secret why most of you lead your respective industries in attracting the 18-34 demographic. Consumers within this bracket want to tie their dollars to a cause now more than ever before. With that said, we at Medialore can’t help but wonder why none of you influential brands have elected to win the Internet by standing out as true trailblazers and publicly taking a stance on the heavily-publicized movement against systemic racism in America.
From a marketing perspective, the viral firepower the topic generates is to die for. This movement has created a ripple effect of media coverage including news pundit and talk show discussions, political dialogue amongst presidential candidates, viral engagement, recent box office films, documentaries and countless of other various activities, thus maintaining this as one of the more consistently trending issues within the last two years.
What’s even more stunning is its power to enforce change. Conversations stemming from hashtags such as #BlacklivesMatter, #Bringbackourgirls, #BlackonCampus, and #StayMadABBY, have lead to resignations, terminations, mass protests, boycotts and change in policy within many American institutions. All this is to say that the viral presence of this issue can bring about one of the strongest tidal waves of organic PR momentum you can find. But still crickets from many of the world’s most innovative and forward-thinking brands.
Now we know the nature of the subject is sensitive. Even though it’s hard to admit, many of your consumers are uncomfortable talking about it, failing to relate to many of the claims made by victims, witnesses, and supporters. This, along with the inexperience of knowing enough about systemic racism and its history is the likely culprit behind each of you continually passing on such a momentous opportunity. Nonetheless, with such prodigious marketing potential, this is a chance, every major innovative brand should take if marketed delicately under the right steps. This is where we come in.
Part two of this blog will be released next week on how to create an effective branding campaign which takes advantage of this trending dialogue, while putting your company in a favorable branding position of not just social awareness, but emotionally connecting with the movement.