‘The Best Men Can Be’. That’s the tagline of Gillette’s new ad campaign that focuses on highlighting social issues such as bullying, the ‘#MeToo’ movement and sexism.
Launched on 13th January, Gillette’s new ad campaign has divided opinion and re-ignited the debate about brands that politicise adverts with hot-button social justice issues.
The message in the advert is one that is aimed at males exclusively, as they encourage men to ‘say the right thing’, ‘act the right way’ and to ‘hold each other accountable’.
Whilst some people have praised the advert, others have vowed to Boycott Gillette.
But what do the stats say? At the time of writing, the YouTube video has a like to dislike ratio of 38k likes and 258k dislikes.
Perhaps unsuspectingly, Gillette decided to allow comments on the video, where you really have to dig deep to find anything resembling a positive comment.
Some of the comments include:
‘How can their marketing department be so out of touch with reality?’
‘How can you alienate your entire demographic and not expect it to blow up in your face?’
‘Sell razors, not propaganda.’
‘I love how multi-billion dollar corporations think they have some kind of moral high ground to tell us how to behave’
‘Well this was a colossal mistake. Do you even know your customers?’
— Jnl (@JeffGauci) January 14, 2019
Okay, this #Gillette ad is a little bit schmaltzy and overwrought, but the replies from men who are clearly angry, fragile, and terrified of being criticised or losing their right to live in the past, are proof of how much we need campaigns like this. https://t.co/fSXJkjSgB1
— Hazel Hayes (@TheHazelHayes) January 15, 2019
— Jason White (@JasonCDN88) January 14, 2019
I am not perfect. Breaking news none of you are.
I am tired of the woke mafia including the press, companies and politicians being given a pass on demonising all men and certain masculine traits whilst they seek to define gender etc without challenge. #Toxicmasculinity #Gillette
— Brian G (@dogbackwards_) January 14, 2019
The most frustrating thing about those supporting #Gillette‘s stupid ad is that they think the men upset by the ad are “having their idea of masculinity challenged.” This is bullshit. It’s that they’re being accused of not stopping other people’s bad behavior, without evidence.
— Jared L Johnson (@JaredSmells) January 15, 2019
“Most of you are shit, but some of you are good. Please buy one of our razors.” #Gillette
— Nick Harding (@nickharding2710) January 14, 2019
#Gillette stop trying to divide men and women. There are good people and shitty people from both genders.
— Evan Regan (@EvanRegan87) January 15, 2019
— Luke (@lukeinproperty) January 14, 2019
— WomensEqualityUK (@WEP_UK) January 15, 2019
Recent years have seen a growing trend in the amount of brand activism from advertisers. Some of which have ignited heated debates around the issues they cover.
This trend suggests that brands in today’s world aren’t just in the business of influencing our purchasing decisions, but they’re also shaping our culture.
But the question is, where do brands fit into political discourse? Is it their responsibility to highlight such issues? Or should they even have a place in the debate at all?