Brands Take Note: Boycotts are No Joke
Consumers are voting based on their beliefs through boycotts and social media activism. This power is real, and brands should take note of the influence of politics on shopping behavior. Rebecca Brooks covers this issue in detail in a recent article on MediaPost, where she gives brands some ideas of how to put a proactive plan in place to combat loss due to boycotts and/or avoid other potential pitfalls in a politically charged shopping landscape.
The extremely charged atmosphere during the 2016 presidential election has diminished a little bit, but it awakened a recognition by people that their spending could have influence on national discourse and policy. With the mid-term Congressional elections on the horizon, politics is not retreating from the public consciousness. She writes: “stakes have never been higher, politics will take center stage from a distraction standpoint, and this will surely impact economics in the form of retail spending.”
She continues “brands have to be very aware of who their audience is and how their political views or lack of views will impact their customers.” To do so, brands must:
- Understand themselves and avoid knee-jerk reactions to political trends that don’t fit with the brand promise. Consumers will see through pandering and look for authenticity first.
- Understand the customer, which begins with a knowledge that demographics have shifted dramatically with the newest generations of shoppers. Previous generations could be somewhat lumped together through common experience, but Millennials and younger have more diversity. Brands need to find that connection between human truth and consumer needs.
- Show responsibility and goodwill by giving back and doing more than just delivering profits to stockholders.
For the complete article, visit: https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/315849/politics-shopping-and-how-to-avoid-a-brand-boycot.html
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