With the political controversy going on in America today, most companies avoid the mention of any politics in their advertisements to avoid potential backlash. Thinking back to recent political advertisements that caught our attention, we can all think of a few that were extremely unsuccessful (i.e. Kendall Jenner Pepsi Commercial 2017), however some companies hit the nail on the head with their political advertisements, and it’s safe to say the reward was worth the risk.
2011 – Chipotle: “Back to the Start”
Chipotle’s “Back to the Start” Ad brought attention to the need for improved sustainable farming in the food production process. Chipotle is considered a fast food chain; a restaurant chain most commonly thought of as serving inexpensive, low quality food. By confronting the topic of the food production process and food quality head on, Chipotle differentiated themselves from other fast food chains. Chipotle preempted any potential backlash they could have received regarding their process for making food, and changed their image from a typical fast food chain, to a restaurant serving high quality, sustainably farmed fresh food. Chipotle’s campaign focused viewers attention on the fact that they were taking an initiative to inform people of an issue with other restaurants’ food sourcing, rather than the fact that they were also marketing themselves and trying to improve their image. — Video Link
2017 – Heineken: “Worlds Apart”
Heineken’s “Worlds Apart” ad campaign showcased two average people with opposing beliefs working together to complete a simple challenge. At the end of the challenge, their opposing beliefs are revealed and they get the option to either leave, or stay and discuss their differences over a beer. Every person in the experiment decided to stay and discuss their differences rather than leave. Heineken found a way to shed light on these topics of conversation and on America’s current political disputes without creating any conflict of ideals with viewers. Heineken did not share any political view of their own, and they also created a positive image on the people who did reveal their political views in the advertisement. — Video Link
2017 – Mr.Clean: “Cleaner of your Dreams”
On a funnier note, Mr.Clean’s Super Bowl 2017 Commercial, “Cleaner of your Dreams,” depicted a cartoon Mr.Clean cleaning a woman’s house while she stands behind him checking him out. At the end of the ad, Mr.Clean turns into her husband, the wife goes to kiss him and the ad reads “You Gotta Love a Man who Cleans.” This ad targets both men and women, as women can relate to the wife in the advertisement, and men are literally being told women love a man who cleans, encouraging them to clean more. This puts an ironic and funny spin on an advertisement for cleaning products as it opposes old ideals of women being the “housewives,” and has the woman “checking out” the man, which traditionally, the roles would be reversed. — Video Link
All three of these ad campaigns were extremely successful in not only increasing these brands’ sales, but also improving their brand images. Each ad took a different approach with one more lighthearted but still serious, one more serious than lighthearted, and the last one taking on a more comical approach. Taking risks in your company’s marketing campaigns and being bold, as long as it is done properly and carefully, is more than worth it in building your brand and getting your name out there. If you convey that your brand is socially and ethically responsible enough to bring up the not-so-easy topics of conversation, or make a bold statement, you’ll not only grow your audience, but develop a trusting relationship with them.
Contact MaxExposure for help making your bold statement and boosting your brand image today!