Recently, a journalist from YFS Magazine wrote an article about whether brands should take a stand on issues. Here was my response.
For the most part, I believe that brands should not take a stand on larger social issues if those issues are something of controversy. Religion, politics, sexuality; these topics are the things that make big bar brawls and even larger socio-messes. Why should brands feel that “they” have the right to get involved and take a stand on something that is a matter of opinion? I have always believed that there are topics that have no right or wrong answer. For instance, sight, smell, taste – everyone is different, so there is no right or wrong with these items. The larger social issues are no different. What is “right” for one person or group may not be “right” for another and therefore both can be right. It’s not about proving one side correct at the expense of disproving the other side. Both sides are right for the groups who feel “that way.”
There are, however, some issues on which brands (in my humble opinion) can take a stand. Poverty, hunger, helping others – these are things that are universally good. Nobody will argue that helping the poor, the needy or a starving child is bad. A brand that wants to take a stand in order to faciliate the end of suffering, in my opinion, is a good thing. Any brand that decides to take a stand on some religious, political or issue concerning sexuality should take a look in the mirror and at least admit to themselves that they are doing so for some ulterior motive.