When Brands Take a Stand

Luke Miller, CEO/CCO – Moment Creative

‘Don’t mix business with politics’ has always been a phrase people toss around. It’s a cautionary statement that is about as stale as business professional attire and 5-day workweeks: they all need to go the way of the fax machine. By not mixing business with politics brands generally avoid polarization and retain customers on both sides of the fence – a bottom line friendly, cowardly approach.

I appreciate when brands take a stand. For instance, I know exactly where Chick-Fil-A stands on LGBTQIA+ issues, so I do not eat there and Moment would never work with them. Cancel culture be damned – brands have some of the biggest platforms in the world and it is high time brands stood on that platform and made their positions clear.

Speaking of clear positions, it’s that time of year when corporate logos get rainbow washed and we all know what that means…or do we? Every June logos get that rainbow treatment for PRIDE and then the sarcastic memes show up on your IG feed, the articles questioning the intent start bombarding your inboxes, and the podcasts begin belittling brands who simply change their logo. Are they genuinely advancing a cause? Pandering to a population? Or doing it because it’s trendy?

You will notice rainbow washing of the 2021 variety features some new colors – light blue, pink, white, black, and brown: a more inclusive version of the rainbow jack we’ve all become accustomed to. But do brands understand the increase in colors? Do consumers? Well, neither matter. Why you ask? Because sometimes a simple thing like a logo change says more than anything else could.

Now, some brands really back their rainbow logos with action, but even for the ones who don’t – I’m with it. Because if a brand does nothing more than change their logo – they are still saying so much. They are saying we see you. They are saying we stand with you. They are saying to all the haters, doubters, and naysayers – we won’t ignore you anymore.

And it may be cliché or overdone. It may get labeled as “rainbow washing” because it’s a low effort thing to do. But even if it’s all talk and no action for a lot of brands, it does what it’s intended to do. It brings LGBTQIA+ to the surface. It gives underrepresented people the floor. And even if most brands do little more than changing their logo – taking a stand, being an ally, and lifting people – is powerful.

At Moment, we are members and allies of this community. We support this cause. We support brands taking a stand on this issue and ALL issues. We aren’t afraid to mix business with politics and we don’t think any brands should be. Stop belittling a moment of solidarity. It’s not rainbow washing – it’s seeing, it’s accepting, and it furthers the conversation. Take a stand, even if it’s a small one.

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