Right Brain, Left Brain Blog

52 posts categorized "CSR"

25 August 2017

Online Ad of the Week: Lonely Whale Foundation '#StopSucking' (US)

Lonely whale

"I may not look like I suck, but I do" is one of the opening lines to a new PSA ad created by Possible for the Lonely Whale Foundation. Not words you'd expect to come out of a group of celebrities' mouths, the intentionally humourous spot brings attention to the fact that 500 million plastic straws are used every day in the US and often end up in the ocean, polluting the water and causing harm to sealife.  

Continue reading "Online Ad of the Week: Lonely Whale Foundation '#StopSucking' (US)" »

15 January 2013

The return of the community

By Matthew Gidley, Momentum UK

Historians have long recorded shifts in social behaviour resulting from political or economical change.  The turbulence of the past four years has provoked one of the most prolific social reactions known in recent history: the return of the community. 

This time, things have changed: people are uniting not just in families or neighbourhoods, but also by geography, interest, profession and principles.   The structure of brands’ audiences is changing and marketers must reassess their strategy to fulfil an increasing need among consumers to feel part of something as the things they value continue to erode.

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05 December 2012

Starbucks or Star'sucks'?

By Cream Editorial

I’m not much of a Starbucks loyalist, so this 2012 Starbucks campaign called ‘Every Coffee Should Be a Starbucks’ leaves me oddly amused, considering the current ‘tax-ing’ environment the brand is in, no pun intended. The American coffee chain recently faced turbulence in the UK when it was widely criticised for evading corporation tax over a period of time. And that makes this summer campaign strange to look at – with its tone of voice almost bordering on arrogance. A trifle baffling! 

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26 November 2012

Why Movember is a ‘mo’ving initiative

Movember is well underway: a worldwide initiative in November when the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces is encouraged in order to raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer and testicular cancer.

This year, Gillette has sponsored the Movember movement in order to promote its Fusion Proglide Styler. What is interesting is that the brand has launched the eMO’gency Styler Tour which will tour cities globally, ‘mo’tivating people to partake in Movember.

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08 November 2012

Managing a social media crisis - the do’s and don’ts

By Ruben Pillai

Last week, American Apparel found itself fighting a Twitter backlash after it used the site to promote a ‘Sandy sale’ at those directly affected by the hurricane that left parts of the US devastated. On tweeting the words  “In case you’re bored during the storm, 20% off everything for the next 36 hours”, the brand received a barrage of complaints, with users branding the move ‘tasteless’, ‘insulting’ and ‘low’. Arguably, its not what American Apparel did that caused the issue, but the way in which they launched it somewhat flippantly via a tweet.

For brands, the freedom of expression that Twitter allows can be something of a blessing or a curse. It’s great when consumers follow what you are doing, retweet the bits they like and generally interact positively. It’s not so great when you have to defend your name or your actions via the Twittersphere. For this reason more and more brands are adopting a crisis communications strategy.

With this in mind, here are my dos and don’ts of crisis communications management in this age of immediacy.

Do – remain calm under pressure

The recent Lance Armstrong debacle has caused a headache for every one of his sponsors who have been forced to drop him. By far the most high profile of these is Nike, which didn’t immediately terminate its contract with Armstrong, but ultimately took the only available course of action in the face of ‘insurmountable evidence’. 

I think it’s quite refreshing that the brand didn’t jump straight to conclusions and panic, instead standing by their man until the facts became crystal clear. Usually brands bow to pressure and make quick decisions to ‘save the brand image’, which ultimately did result in Nike dropping Armstrong a week or so later.

Lance armstrong

Don’t – take your eye completely off the ball

Last year, WH Smith learnt a lesson the hard way, after a Twitter user tweeted a photograph appearing to show that the retailer had moved its copies of Gay Times and Attitude to keep them out of sight. The picture, which was uploaded over the weekend, received hundreds of retweets, leaving the brand to deal with a Twitter storm by the Monday morning. It quickly issued a statement explaining its actions but by then it was too late – the damage was done.

Don’t – view social media as a secondary news channel

Livestrong used Twitter to announce that Armstrong had stepped down as chairman in wake of the scandal, with many subsequent media reports opening with ‘Livestrong confirms Armstrong step-down via Twitter’ or similar. Was this the correct thing to do? With the severity and enormity of the story, was it enough to ‘just tweet’ about it and let the leaves fall as they may? I think that more should have been made out of it, with a press conference called at the very least.

Do – take responsibility for social media blunders

Recently an employee from a US brand called Kitchen Aid tweeted something unsavoury about Barack Obama. Kitchen Aid deleted the Tweet and issued an apology, making clear that the offending tweet did not reflect the brand’s opinion. Next up the head of Kitchen Aid talked on the record to popular tech-site Mashable to apologise for the tweet, taking immediate responsibility. Mashable went on to publish an infographic demonstrating how quickly mentions of the brand reduced as the apology and media interviews were broadcast.

One final tip I’d offer (to brands and footballers alike) is to always take a deep breath and count to ten before sending out a tweet when emotional. Once a tweet is out there, it can be out there for your followers and the general masses to remember indefinitely, regardless of whether you immediately delete it or not.

26 September 2011

Cream Daily: Google partners with CBS Outdoor for UK trials

Sony, French Connection, L’Oréal, Garnier and Samsung have collaborated with Google and CBS Outdoor UK to trial an initiative combining outdoor ads with online content through the mobile service Google Goggles. As part of the experiment, Google and CBS Outdoor UK will enable Goggles’ recognition on many out-of-home ads running on the CBS Outdoor network. Read the full story here.

Google cbs

In other news, Corona Extra and MTV have partnered for an underwater gig as part of the 'extraordinary experiences' campaign that the bottled lager brand has been running on Facebook. Read more here.

P&G unveils new social and environmental commitments at Clinton Global Initiative. Procter & Gamble has made three new commitments to improve the lives of millions of families across the globe, as revealed at this year’s Clinton Global Initiative. Discover more here.

19 June 2011

The price of a clean conscience?

A smart infographic from the Socialcast blog that examines brand CSR activity. One of the most interesting points of note is the prevalence of pharma names in the list of top 10 most generous companies. It turns out they're a big hearted bunch in the pharmaceutical industry.

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16 November 2010

Volkswagon's Fun Theory finds a winning idea


The innovative Volkswagon Fun Theory campaign was launched on the premise that "fun" action can change human behaviour, for the good of society.

The 'Speed Camera Lottery' by Kevin Richardson attempts to make people obey the speed limit by using a cash incentive. The money from speeding fines was put in the 'lottery pot' and then drivers who obeyed the limit were chosen at random and given a prize cheque. 

In 3 days 24,857 cars passed the special camera. The average speed before the experiment was 32 km/h. The average speed during the experiment was 25 km/h which is speed reduction of 22%. 

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  • Right Brain, Left Brain sums up the dichotomy of a media business that’s constantly battling with the challenge of delivering a profit and discovering new ways to communicate to consumers. The Cream editorial team combined with a dream team of industry pioneers from around the world share their expert opinions.

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