Should Brands Take Stands? (Article Response)

Reference Article: Great Brands Take Stands – Nathan Thornton (Medium.com, AMA)
Headline image – YouTube/Vito Gesualdi

I don’t completely agree with this one… 

Great brands CAN take stands on political and social issues. Should they though???

Mr. Thornton suggests that if a company wants to connect with its market then it should act more human (less like a brand) and that the human thing to do is to be bold and have an opinion.

I’d say that the issue itself matters a lot, especially when you consider the climate surrounding that issue.

Ask ESPN and the NFL about how well their opinions are doing for them… They are arguably “great brands,” right?

The problem with having an opinion these days is that, when it comes to certain topics, you’re walking into a war zone.

You could make an ad about what you think represents equality between races, but have it turn out to be perceived as one of the most racially insensitive things on the internet – Get your corporate-level public apology ready… (Dove).

Want to stand up for your religious beliefs by choosing to deny service to a customer? how about a supreme court trial to go with it?

And don’t forget about Pepsi being the solution to riots in the streets.

However, sometimes taking a stand does turn out to be an excellent idea.

You could choose to throw out all the cultural norms surrounding women’s body image in your own advertisement campaign, and go down in history as an industry leader on the topic. (also Dove)

So I disagree with the idea that in order for a brand to be “great” that it should take a stand.

I’d instead suggest that a brand can be great by taking a stand on the right issue at the right time. In short, it depends.

“Remeber, never fight unless you’re sure you can win.” – Grandpa (3 Ninjas)

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