A few weeks ago, I stumbled on this advert, which stopped me in my tracks – although probably not in the way its makers were hoping for.
The children’s choir, ‘running for cures’ and random acts of kindness convinced me, right up until the end, that I was watching an advert for a charity. So Coca-Cola’s logo in the final few seconds was jarring to say the least.
Of course, a philanthropic, saccharine tone isn’t unusual for big brands like Coke. And it’s easy to feel warm and fuzzy about it. But the whole thing left a pretty sour taste in my mouth.
So, why? Well, the uproar Coke has caused in its sponsorship of the current winter Olympics – and its total silence in the face of Russia’s anti-gay laws. This advert causes its share of controversy for dropping the scene showing the gay marriage in Ireland. It’s spineless on both counts – you’d hope that if they wanted to make a statement they’d at least stick to their guns.
What I also found unsettling was the total appropriation of language, imagery and tone that a charity would use.
It’s flattering that corporations are lifting messaging that shows they ‘believe in a better world’. And we know that appealing to people’s emotions are crucial – not only do emotions have an impact on the decision-making process, but they have long term impact. And our sector is, after all, about long-term loyalty – which we know leads to legacies.
What Coca Cola really fall short of is saying anything worthwhile. Ultimately, all they’re saying is ‘Life’s not too bad, look on the bright side’. And whilst that’s nice, shouldn’t it be about enacting some real, positive change?
This week, we helped UNICEF International launch 100% – a global movement to ensure that every single child on the planet finally gets the vaccines that could save their lives. We’ve created a fundraising toolkit covering acquisition and retention materials that will enable UNICEF all over the world to use our work to start raising money for this incredible goal straight away.
It’s ambitious, it’s inspiring. It’s mobile fundraising, and it’s global. We’re hugely excited.
Look out for more updates from us over the coming weeks!
We’re Ramping Up The Red and selling some delicious home baked goods here at Open today, raising money for the British Heart Foundation. We will all be extremely high on sugar by the end of the day – but all for a great cause.
Happy Friday everyone!