Categories: Culture Wars / PR issues / Trust and reputations
27 April 2019
‘Go woke, go broke’
As predicted by 21st Century PR Issues earlier this year, Gillette sales are falling following the release of its high-profile – much debated and viewed – advertisement which denigrated its core customer base:
The ad, entitled ‘We Believe’, was released in January. It asked men to “shave their toxic masculinity,” while blaming an entire gender for the actions of a small percentage of sexual abusers, rapists and perverts. [Gillette Sales Decline Following ‘Toxic Masculinity’ Ad, summit.news]
Virtue-signalling is especially damaging when a leading manufacturer issues an advertisement designed to appeal to those people who really do hate (as in despise) everything that that firm’s brand has traditionally stood for. So it’s no wonder that many men – who bought into the once carefully cultivated and appealing brand image – are now turning their back on Gillette and going elsewhere to buy their razors.
Prison Planet is the source? Realllllly? Luckily, with all his culture-war axes ground to a razor edge, he’s in a strong position to offer the alienated core customer base an alternative shaving solution 🙂
https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gillette-advert-toxic-masculinity-sales-impact-a8745966.html suggests that sales weren’t adversely affected, and maybe the brand managed to pivot slightly away from a core base that was already deserting them (https://morningconsult.com/form/gillette-commercial-survey/).
In fact, given that, well before the ad, in 2017, reports suggested sales of the razors were down 6% (https://eu.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2017/04/26/slower-gillette-razor-sales-nick-pgs-quarterly-sales/100935374/) the ad may have shored up sales.
…and the ad on Twitter has had over half a million likes: https://twitter.com/Gillette/status/1084850521196900352 which I doubt P&G are complaining about.
…and P&G’s stock is up too: https://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/pg/interactive-chart?timeframe=6m. If he had bought shares in P&G when the ad came out he would have made a substantial profit by now.
Far be it from me to celebrate when a huge corporation does well out of a marketing campaign, but… Prison Planet… honestly? tsk. I still can’t get over that.
Woke = broke indeed! God almighty…
Thomas, thanks for the comment. The first time I ever read anything by Paul Joseph Watson was when I read his piece about Gillette. I had no idea Watson was famous or infamous: and now that I know more I have to say he is not my cup of tea. But the article – besides the headline being OTT – stands up. The ad backfired on its core base – sales declined even if it won mass praise elsewhere. Meanwhile, the sale of Harry’s for $1.37 billion proves your point about shaving tastes changing long before that ad. Of course, P&G is much more than Gillette, otherwise its stock would be falling. But however bad or otherwise Watson might be… that advert was creepy.