Yue Hang LAW Image retrieved from encoretvb.com Nowadays, the freedom and variety offered by technology have given consumers more control over what they choose to view and when to view it. As such, this limits the reach of commercial advertising, prompting marketers to resort to …
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Vika Zhang The beginning of 2020 was not easy for everyone with the outbreak of pandemic, especially in Hubei Province, mainland China. There was no doubt that the front-line medical workers were the most burdened ones at that time, as they had to work long …
Wong Wing Yan Viann
Have you ever thought of buying products with your daily waste?
Since 2019, global leading beer brand Corona, has partnered with Parley for the Oceans, an environmental organization, to celebrate the World Oceans Week. Noticing that around 8 million tons of plastic waste are dumped into the oceans each year (National Geographic, 2019), together they launched ‘Pay With Plastic’, a purpose-driven campaign dedicated to protect the world’s aqua paradises (Ellman, 2019).
The campaign provided consumers with various activities to be part of the initiative, all for a good cause. First, people are encouraged to trade plastic waste for a new brew, where geo-targeted interactive maps are displayed around cities to guide people to the nearest recycling machine for the exchange (Yu, 2020). Users may trade three plastic bottles for a bottle of Corona beer. Secondly, a limited edition package made of upcycled materials is designed – for every package sold, one square meter of a beach will be cleaned up. Meanwhile, consumers can sign up to take a role in the clean-up too. Through these activities, the campaign demonstrated Corona’s strong commitment to fight against plastic pollution.
By the end of 2020, the campaign has already collaborated with over 25,000 volunteers, where 537 beaches, a total of 3 million square meters in 23 countries, have been cleaned (Yu, 2020). It also engaged with various stakeholders from nine countries, including the United Kingdom, Canada and Spain, to participate in the action (Christe, 2019).
The campaign has created a buzz towards environmental and social issues by utilizing low-cost yet impactful guerrilla marketing tactics, such as posting huge posters and placing recycle machines around cities. This reinforces the word-of-mouth effect and its brand image, which also aligns with its beach-friendly brand identity.
Besides being successful in raising awareness, the campaign has connected Corona with its audiences, allowing them to be part of the campaign. As a purpose-driven campaign, it tapped into consumers’ concerns and engaged people who shared the same value, which helped the brand to reach a broader audience. It can be seen that Corona differentiates from a business-focused brand like some of its competitors; instead, it positions itself as a value-driven and relatable brand (Chiste, 2019).
Interestingly, such marketing strategy is especially effective in targeting Gen Z. According to a survey done by GlobeScan (2020), around 60% of the Gen Z respondents mentioned that they prefer to work for and consume products from a company that is socially and environmentally responsible. Hence, this campaign further builds a loyal relationship between Corona and potential Gen Z consumers, bringing benefits in the long run.
‘Pay With Plastic’ is still an ongoing project where it does not only embrace sustainability but also incentivizes and educates customers to achieve the social mission together through effective and innovative activities. Corona’s bona fides and continuous effort towards environmental issues will definitely create a ripple effect of positive changes to the world, where we all belong to.
Christe, D. (2019). Corona lets beer drinkers pay with plastic waste for World Oceans Day. Retrieved from https://www.marketingdive.com/news/corona-lets-beer-drinkers-pay-with-plastic-waste-for-world-oceans-day/556517/
Corona Swaps Sales for Plastic During World Oceans Week as Part of Mission to Protect Paradise with Parley. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190604006171/en/Corona-Swaps-Sales-Plastic-World-Oceans-Week
Fisk, P. (2019). Pay With Plastic … Corona teams up with Parley to let you pay for your beer with plastic waste – GeniusWorks. Retrieved from https://www.thegeniusworks.com/2019/06/pay-with-plastic-corona-teams-up-with-parley-to-let-you-pay-for-your-beer-with-plastic-waste/
Radically Better Future: The Next Gen Reckoning Report. (2020). Retrieved from https://globescan.com/radically-better-future-next-gen-reckoning-report/
Yu, K. (2020). The Good Corona: Find out how this brand inspired consumers to make a positive change! [Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing] – Valens Research. Retrieved from https://www.valens-research.com/dynamic-marketing-communique/the-good-corona-find-out-how-this-brand-inspired-consumers-to-make-a-positive-change-fridays-gorillas-of-guerrilla-marketing/
Li Pui Ching, Venus Who would have imagined that words written by a homeless person could be turned into fonts that are sold online? Arrels Foundation, which supports 1,600 homeless people in Barcelona, collaborated with advertising agency The Cyranos McCann to create this creative and …
To Lok Ching When it comes to marketing social missions and impact, we tend to associate them with non-profits or public sector agencies run one of their largest sustainability initiatives – Run For The Oceans. Their brand reputation to effectively educate and encourage participation, raising …
The ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ social campaign was initiated by a number of anti-discrimination and civil rights organizations in the United States, such as NAACP, Free Press, Color of Change, Anti-Defamation League, etc. They encouraged companies, non-profit organizations and advertising agencies to suspend the placement of Facebook ads in July 2020, forcing Facebook to face up to the spread of hate, discrimination, racism, antisemitism, and false information on social platforms (Stop Hate for Profit, 2020).
In May 2020, George Floyd, a black American man, was killed by a white police officer. The incident triggered a wave of anti-racism demonstrations. U.S. President Donald Trump wrote “When the looting starts, the shooting starts” in a post on social media in response to the protest. Afterwards, Twitter hid his post on the grounds of “promoting violence,” but Facebook did not take any action. In addition, the U.S. presidential election was being held at that period, so these non-profit organizations jointly launched this campaign to ask Facebook to solve the problem.
The campaign was carried out with the support of more than 1,200 organizations and innumerable consumers, including many large companies such as Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Microsoft, Levi’s, Ford Motor, The North Face, Ben & Jerry’s, etc. Non-U.S. companies such as Adidas, PlayStation and InterContinental Hotels Group have also joined the campaign. The British company Unilever even announced that it will boycott Facebook for at least three months until the U.S. presidential election.
In the past, companies, non-profit organizations and advertising agencies have relied heavily on social media for promotion since they have a huge number of users. According to Statista, Facebook’s revenue has grown from $17.9 billion in 2015 to $86 billion in 2020, and most of the profits come from advertising revenue (Statista, 2021). But in 2020, the social networking giant Facebook, which has 2.5 billion monthly active users, has been boycotted in turn. It is mainly because there are many alternative platforms, such as YouTube, Twitter, Amazon, etc. For example, after Disney participated in the ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ campaign, its advertising expenditure on Amazon increased by more than 43 times (Marketing Charts, 2020).
At the same time, it can be seen from this social campaign that companies and non-profit organizations around the world have become more sensitive to social issues, avoiding damage to corporate images. They even made statements on some social issues to gain more support from the public. Organizations supporting social campaigns are a way of reaching consumers. According to a survey of 420 American consumers, 75% would support a company that has the same values as themselves because of the strong emotional connection (Clutch, 2019).
To conclude, through the ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ social campaign, we can see that despite being in the lead in advertising, Facebook is not invincible. In the future, more and more organizations will speak up on social issues to gain more people’s support.
Stop Hate for Profit. (2020). Retrieved from https://www.stophateforprofit.org
- Tankovska. (2021, February 5). Facebook: annual revenue and net income 2007-
- Statista. Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/277229/facebooks-annual-revenue-and-net-income/
Marketing Charts. (2020, September 17). Disney Was A Top Ad Spender on Facebook
in H1 Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/277229/facebooks-annual-revenue-and-net-income/
Toby A. Cox. (2019, January 7). How Corporate Social Responsibility Influences
Buying Decisions. Clutch. Retrieved from https://clutch.co/pr-firms/resources/how-corporate-social-responsibility-influences-buying-decisions
Lee Sin Man, Sharon Have you ever imagined you can conduct a successful marketing campaign without spending a large sum of money? The budget of a campaign should not dictate its success, but rather how it resonates with its target audience. In 2018, leading dog …
Cheung Nga Wing Sharon Have you ever been stuck in a stressful video meeting that makes you emotionally overwhelmed? It is reported that working from home and lockdown result in mental health issues, with 80% of respondents to a survey on the matter declaring that …
Lau Sean Hui Lok
The pandemic brings a ‘new normal’ to the world. For non-profits, it may be a more difficult time to receive funding from the public through large-scale events. Thus, digital platforms now play a more important role for organizations to execute their campaigns. While some NGOs like the Arreles Foundation successfully launched the ‘Homeless Fonts’ campaign, which received massive support and donations from the netizens (Arreles Foundation,2020), some did the opposite. The World Food Program (WFP) demonstrated what could go wrong with a fundraising campaign.
The fundraising campaign launched in May 2020 featured photos of children from less developed countries who are receiving aid from WFP. The two photographs that went viral on social media depicted a screaming child during care and another one salivating. Mixed comments were generated about the situation, with most of them lie on the downside. Comments like “Wtf that photo is beyond frightening thought this was for a horror film or something.” and “You make me sick spreading picture like this to get people to give…” were posted on the Facebook post (Chadwick, 2020). WFP, however, did not pull the photographs down immediately but claimed that it demonstrates how people can have divergent perceptions about the same incident. Although they eventually decided to withdraw the images and made a statement on the choice of campaign photographs, it still stirred up negative discussions on the internet.
In fact, the strategy used in this fundraising campaign may be unethical. On one hand, the photographs use the beneficiaries as their subject, which may exploit their rights as consent have not been sought. This is a common mistake in marketing strategies when terms of photograph usage are not well-drafted. It redirects the focus to the person in the image instead of the product or service, which inserted various level of unethical perceptions on the individual. On the other hand, the photos might make its viewers uncomfortable.
The choice of photograph was arguably of bad taste: When photos involved controversial or inhumane situations, they should only be displayed with caution. For instance, the photograph of a 3-year-old Syrian kid on the beach in 2015 aroused massive awareness of the refugee’s problem rather than causing controversies (The Guardian, 2015). Photographs often serve a larger impact than words, therefore it could play a critical role in determining a campaign’s success.
During the pandemic, companies struggle to raise funds for their target audience. However, the inappropriate use of marketing strategies will not only bring adverse impact but also affect the reputation and credibility of the organization. For non-profit organizations who serve as role models to engage in benefactions, they should pay more attention to every move. Nevertheless, there are often crisis involving NGO’s unethical behaviors. Thus, it is crucial to plan thoroughly before publishing or executing any plans.
After all, campaigns are meant to benefit the underprivileged, but not creating unwanted attention from the public.
Chadwick, V. (2020, May 27). World food Programme Pulls COVID-19 fundraising images after backlash. Retrieved March 14, 2021, from https://www.devex.com/news/world-food-programme-pulls-covid-19-fundraising-images-after-backlash-97330
Fundation, A. (n.d.). Homelessfonts.org. Retrieved March 14, 2021, from https://www.homelessfonts.org/
Shocking images of drowned Syrian BOY Show Tragic plight of refugees. (2015, September 02). Retrieved March 15, 2021, from https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/02/shocking-image-of-drowned-syrian-boy-shows-tragic-plight-of-refugees
How UNICEF and Facebook used technology to change the fate of the Immunization campaign in Pakistan under the COVID-19 Pandemic?
Hui Wing Lam, Rachel Child receiving vaccine injection in local health center Fear of human interaction, transport interruptions and economic hardships are some of the issues raised under the COVID-19 Pandemic, which seriously disrupted previously routine vaccination and increased vaccine hesitancy in Pakistan. The Director …