Earlier, brands like Tanishq and Surf Excel were also trolled online for ads that hurt the sentiments of certain sections of the audience.Earlier, brands like Tanishq and Surf Excel were also trolled online for ads that hurt the sentiments of certain sections of the audience.

Manyavar is the latest brand to rattle netizens with an ad – now taken off the air – that reimagines Hindu wedding rituals. Earlier, brands like Tanishq and Surf Excel were also trolled online for ads that hurt the sentiments of certain sections of the audience. Venkata Susmita Biswas asks three experts about the disadvantages of standing for reasons.

Brands should not try to change society

MG Parameswaran, founder of Brand-Building.com

A brand that wants to have a social narrative has to be very careful, as people have become very sensitive to actions or initiatives that might harm their heritage and values. Moreover, social media makes it easier for people to file a complaint.

Sometimes brands unnecessarily visualize social change, when they should just try to sell their products. In such cases, it makes one wonder if the brand really means it. For example, State Street Global Advisors, the company that commissioned the “Bad Girl” statue on Wall Street, has been found to pay its female CEOs less than their male colleagues. The company paid $5 million in compensation for allegations of pay inequality from 305 women. Since brands are picking up on the reasons they want to adopt, they need to make sure they are true to it.

Although brands have become wary about the communications they make, seemingly innocuous ads can offend someone. Therefore, I think brands should focus on selling their products and not try to change society.

“Don’t take a stand to get attention”

Russell Barrett, CEO and CEO, BBH India & Publicis Worldwide India

It’s great for brands to champion a cause. However, in doing so, brand custodians have to decide if they are willing to accept that there will be a counterpoint as well.

Sometimes taking a stand on an issue may limit the capture of a movement or a section of people. If a brand that is built on hedonistic values ​​or along traditional metaphors, suddenly has a point of view, it risks being shallow and confusing the audience. A brand can avoid this if it has a historical point of view or makes it a habit to stir up conversations.

Moreover, brands can avoid takeover by supporting their marketing campaign with allied actions and initiatives towards the same cause they want to rush. The brand must believe in the cause it stands for; If not, he could be accused of seizure. Taking a stance shouldn’t be something you do to get attention, or because it’s “topical,” unless you’re prepared for negative reactions as well.

Correspondence should be continuous and frequent.

Indrajeet Mookerjee, Managing Partner, dentsuMB

When dealing with the dynamics of consumer behaviour, it is always wise to assume the type of conversations that may be triggered by some specific social message. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons before jumping the gun, but it’s equally important to stand on something critical if necessary, as this is what creates a strong bond with the audience.

With the Internet becoming more and more popular every passing day, it is impossible to protect a certain section of the audience from a certain type of message, and to keep the campaign highly targeted. Having said that, it is also important to be clear about the goal of the communication as you plan for it. We can’t dismiss the downsides of phishing, but at the same time, these things tend to spark healthy debates and conversations that may work in the brand’s favour.

If a brand truly believes in a particular cause and wants to advocate for it, the messages need to be consistent and repetitive.

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