Need to know

  • Understanding the dynamics of today’s political and social landscape can help brands carve a distinct path to better consumer engagement
  • Grey commissioned Lightspeed to conduct research to understand the role of “togetherness” in brand communications and understand consumers’ views on brands that “take a stand” on divisive issues
  • Attitudes varied by age. 18-24-year-olds exhibited enthusiasm and preference for brands that support a cause, while older cohorts were likely to agree with statements such as “ads should provide a nice escape from politics”
  • However, consumers are cynical. 52% of the 18-24 audience agreed that “advertisers only ever bring people together for their own profit”
  • Issue-conscious consumers increasingly expect brands to support their point-of-view through donations, backing legislation, funding initiatives, creating experiences, or performing similar change-generating actions
  • For those brands that don’t feel the desire to fully invest – to donate time and money, and make it a core mission of their DNA – joining the conversation may not be worth the cost
  • While taking a stand on these issues may allow the brand to occupy an elevated space in younger consumers’ minds, the payoff in uplift in sales for the brand may not always follow, especially in the short term.