Brands as of this week have shifted their focus and messaging to be socially-active and vocally against racism, following protests against the cruel death of George Floyd. Amidst nationwide protests, riots, and calls for actions, brands ride a fine line between coming off as tone-deaf and risking not saying anything at all. Because seventy percent of consumers want to know what the brands they support are doing to address social and environmental issues, it’s important for brands to have a voice and do it with a high level of thoughtfulness. Here are some brands that are taking a stance against racism:
Nike transformed its signature tagline, “Just do it” to “Don’t do it,” encouraging people to not take the current circumstances in the U.S. lightly.
Simple, to-the-point and clear, Disney’s post is effective in addressing its stance. There were several notable comments showing their support also:
The retail-giant took on a human-centered approach addressing the issue at hand and it is being well-accepted. Instead of just showcasing text, Nordstrom actually posted a discussion with leaders and members of their Black employee network, featuring an open dialogue about how we can all make activism an actionable verb.
Peloton ramped up their social activism efforts with not only several social posts but also with a $500,000 donation to NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Additionally, they held a discussion via IG Live with two notable Peloton instructors/ creators discussing social justice and activism. Peloton also is hosting a Speak Up Ride followed by a Breathe In, Speak Out meditation session, encouraging participants to wear black in solidarity.
In addition to pledging $1,000,000 to efforts addressing social injustices, YouTube also called out Center for Policing Equity for others to donate, also changing their logo to black, in an act of solidarity.
In a very socially-conscious post, Reebok clarified that they don’t want people to buy their shoes right now, but rather walk in someone else’s. Adding depth and thoughtfulness, they also posted an additional video behind a stand-still black background of a voice, reminding people that this is everyone’s issue.
In addition to some profound pieces of photojournalism, it’s evident that Vogue is not taking the issue at hand lightly. Vogue combines messaging about Pride and its intersectionality with the fight to end racism as well as practical tips for protesters and places to donate.
The DTC makeup company pledged to donate $500,000 to various organizations focused on combatting racial injustice as well as $500,000 specifically for Black-owned beauty businesses.
Not only is Covergirl donating to the NAACP and other organizations, but in light of current events, they also are postponing their Beauty Broadcast Launch Party. Continuing to promote the event felt insensitive to the brand given the current climate. Brands in similar positions should look to Covergirl as an example of how to re-position during unexpected times.
In a very well-written post, Warby Parker not only is pledges to donate $1,000,000 to organizations and initiatives focusing on ending systematic racism. The language used also effectively builds camaraderie and unity with their employees and customers. The evidence is visible in the comments section, overflowing with support and gratefulness for a company that not only spoke but acted.
We encourage you all to speak up and be actively anti-racist, while also continuing to seek out ways to support the end of systemic racism. As always, we’re here to talk.