Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Uncategorized

Major Brands That Lost Their Edge by Going Woke

pixabay
This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

Going woke

pixabay

The concept of being “woke” entails being conscious of and advocating for social justice issues. While this may seem positive, not everyone agrees. Here’s a look at some major brands that lost their edge by going “woke.”

Bud Light

pixabay

Bud Light faced criticism during Pride Month for featuring trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney on a beer can. This move sparked outrage from conservative groups, politicians, and celebrities like Kid Rock, leading to a sales decline and allowing Coors Light to gain popularity.

Target

pixabay

Target faced backlash from anti-LGBTQ+ groups after launching an LGBTQ+-themed collection. Concerned about employee safety, Target removed or concealed some items, damaging customer trust and resulting in a significant drop in business.

Disney

pixabay

Disney faced criticism for its perceived embrace of political correctness, anti-American sentiments, and anti-family values despite its reputation for diversity. Public disapproval of Disney’s political positions poses a risk to its profits, as indicated in SEC filings.

Nike

pixabay

Nike’s collaboration with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney in 2023 received both praise and backlash. While some commended Nike for supporting social justice, others boycotted the brand, going as far as destroying their Nike products in protest.

Gillette

pixabay

Gillette’s ad campaign in 2023, “The Best Men Can Be,” challenging toxic masculinity, sparked intense opposition. Men felt offended and accused Gillette of being anti-male, leading to an $8 billion loss and an acknowledgment from parent company Procter & Gamble that the ad was a misstep.

Starbucks

pixabay

Starbucks’ decision to switch to paper or compostable straws was met with ridicule and criticism for the perceived inferior quality and negative environmental impact. The move was seen as hypocritical and virtue signaling, resulting in a significant drop in sales and tarnishing Starbucks’ reputation.

Coca-Cola

pixabay

Coca-Cola’s attempt to appeal to the “woke” market backfired when allegations of racism, sexism, and cultural appropriation surfaced. The revelation that employees were required to undergo an online course encouraging them to “be less white” in 2023 resulted in a significant decrease in stock price and brand value for the company.

Netflix

pixabay

Netflix, known for its diverse content, faced criticism for its perceived embrace of a “woke” agenda. The removal of popular shows like “The Office” and “Friends” and the addition of LGBTQ+ and feminist content were viewed by some viewers as promoting a leftist, progressive, and anti-family ideology.

Oreo

pixabay

Oreo encountered backlash following a tweet in 2023 stating “Trans people exist” alongside a cookie with the transgender flag colors. The tweet was labeled as political and agenda-driven, with customers expressing concerns about childhood memories being tainted, leading to a decline in sales and social media engagement.

Unilever

pixabay

Unilever, a longstanding consumer goods company, faced controversy for selling Fair & Lovely, a skin-lightening cream criticized for promoting colorism and racism. Despite positioning itself as socially responsible, Unilever’s actions sparked public outcry.

e.l.f

pixabay

e.l.f. Cosmetics faced controversy over its eco-friendly makeup brushes made from recycled plastic bottles. Customers accused the brand of being “woke” and “political,” claiming the brushes were of inferior quality.

Mars

pixabay

Mars faced backlash for rebranding Uncle Ben’s as Ben’s Original in an attempt to eliminate racial stereotypes, leading to boycotts and criticism for what some perceived as pandering and erasure of cultural identity.

Donation

pixabay

Pernod Ricard’s donation of $100,000 to the Trevor Project for LGBTQ+ youth support sparked intense criticism, with some arguing that the company prioritized divisive causes over its core products.

Same-sex marriage

pixabay

Campbell’s endorsement of same-sex marriage legalization in the US triggered calls for boycotts, especially after featuring a gay couple and their son in an advertisement, stirring controversy for the food company.

PepsiCo

pixabay

PepsiCo faced public outrage and accusations of insensitivity over an advertisement featuring Kendall Jenner, prompting an apology and withdrawal due to criticism of trivializing the Black Lives Matter movement.

Criticism

pixabay

H&M faced criticism in 2018 for an online ad depicting a black child in a hoodie with the phrase “coolest monkey in the jungle,” resulting in swift backlash and allegations of racial insensitivity. The ad was retracted following public outrage.

Chick-fil-A

pixabay

Chick-fil-A encountered massive criticism in 2012 for donations to organizations with anti-LGBTQ+ stances, leading to nationwide protests and boycotts despite its loyal customer base. Responding to petitions, Chick-fil-A announced changes to its donation practices over time.

Dove

pixabay

Dove, known for its Real Beauty campaign, faced opposition in 2017 for a Facebook ad that appeared to show a black woman transforming into a white woman after using its body wash. The ad was condemned for perpetuating racial stereotypes, prompting Dove to issue apologies.

Under Armour

pixabay

Under Armour faced backlash in 2017 when CEO Kevin Plank expressed support for President Donald Trump, leading to calls for boycotts from consumers opposed to the administration. The company clarified its values in response to the controversy.

LEGO

pixabay

LEGO paused marketing for sets featuring police and emergency services in 2020 amidst global protests against police brutality. While some praised LEGO’s conscientious approach, others criticized it as an overreaction, highlighting the challenges faced by brands in navigating societal conflicts without alienating audiences.

Lululemon

pixabay

Lululemon stirred controversy in 2020 by promoting a workshop on “resisting capitalism,” seen as hypocritical given its high-end pricing and capitalist business model. This sparked debates on the authenticity of brands in societal movements, emphasizing the delicate balance between advocacy and brand positioning.

Goya Foods

pixabay

Goya Foods received criticism in 2020 after its CEO praised President Donald Trump, leading to demands for boycotts from consumers opposing policies affecting Latinx and immigrant communities. The incident underscored the consequences of corporate endorsements conflicting with customer values.

Victoria’s Secret

pixabay

Victoria’s Secret faced backlash in 2018 over comments by an executive regarding the exclusion of plus-sized and transgender models from its fashion show. The negative feedback sparked discussions on promoting equal opportunity in the fashion industry, prompting significant restructuring and a reevaluation of marketing strategies.

Audi

pixabay

Audi faced backlash in 2017 for a Super Bowl commercial promoting gender pay equality, as revelations about the organization’s own pay disparities and gender composition within the leadership team led to accusations of hypocrisy despite the positive message conveyed.

Blizzard Entertainment

pixabay

Blizzard Entertainment came under fire for penalizing professional Hearthstone player Ng Wai Chung after he expressed support for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests during a post-match interview. The gaming community criticized Blizzard for suppressing free speech to maintain market access in China.

T-Mobile

pixabay

T-Mobile publicly supported the Equality Act in 2021, legislation aimed at protecting the queer community from discrimination in the U.S. While advocates praised T-Mobile’s stance, opponents of the legislation criticized the corporation, highlighting the divisive nature of public opinion on human rights issues.

CrossFit

pixabay

CrossFit’s CEO made controversial remarks on social media in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement, leading to widespread disapproval and the disassociation of several affiliated gyms from the brand. The incident underscored the repercussions of company leadership expressing personal views.

Equinox

pixabay

Equinox and SoulCycle faced boycott threats in 2019 due to a planned fundraiser for President Donald Trump by the chairman of both studios, causing members to feel betrayed by what they perceived as a contradiction to the brands’ progressive and inclusive messaging.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Chuck Steros

    April 26, 2024 at 1:42 pm

    There is no way to win anymore, cancel culture is the worst thing to hit planet earth since the meteor that killed the dinosaurs. Stick to company values and stop supporting the never-ending shift of popular values… which aren’t values at all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Trending