Advertisers are preying on our consciences – although that does signal the world is changing, however slowly
How do you do, fellow kids? It is me, a #brand, and I want you to know that I’m not interested in selling you stuff, I’m here to save the world. You see, I am not just a car company, I am fighting for gender equality. I am not just flogging shampoo, I am championing diversity. I am not just a betting company, I am crusading for LGBT rights.
In the past, there were a few brands that wore their politics on their sleeves, be it Benetton or The Body Shop – however cosmetic some of those causes may have been. But now you can’t move for right-on capitalism – in an attempt to connect with millennials proven to be drawn to, and willing to spend more money on, socially conscious products. Which means modern brands have started using progressive values as a marketing ploy and are appropriating social activism as a form of advertising. It’s like the “greenwashing” of yore, but on a whole other level. We have, I’m afraid, entered a nauseating new age of woke-washing.