Get woke, go broke

Colton Mudloff, Reporter

Gillette and Nike are huge companies who are starting to politicize their businesses. Gillette recently released a commercial in which boys bully other boys and harass women. The decision to pursue this theme was a poor choice as they received lots of backlash for their commercial. Seeing as the commercial attacked the behavior of men, and a majority of their customer base is mostly composed of men, their advert did not bode well for the company. Gillette’s parent company, Proctor & Gamble, or P&G, reported a loss of $5.2 billion and a non-cash writedown of $8 billion for Gillette alone.

In the recently aggressive American political climate, many people are sharing their own opinions. Companies then see these opinions on places like Twitter and Facebook and try to appeal to the people they see more of; the more people who share progressive viewpoints, the more companies will pander to them.

What companies like Gillette and Nike miss is the enormous amount of people by involving their business model with polarizing politics. The everyday American does not want their products delivered with a heaping pile of politics. By shoving these ideas down their consumers’ throats, companies alienate potential customers with their extreme views shared often in adverts.

Gillette’s adverts were more on the tame side while Nike hit America’s hot button issue in all the wrong ways: racism. Heading Nike’s visible media outbursts are the ideas of Colin Kaepernick, a former NFL quarterback who protested by kneeling during the national anthem. Nike’s recent move to stop selling their Betsy Ross American flag shoe because Kaepernick believed the shoe to represent a time where racism was accepted.

Looking beyond the large brands, who will likely rebound from the backlash and continue to sell to their new, progressive buyers; smaller brands have been trying to ride the “trend” of angering the moderate American consumers, sparking many more, smaller scale boycotts of companies trying to politicize themselves.