L2, Millennials, Nike, Transparency, Trends, Uncategorized

Nike’s Colin Kaepernick Ad: Altruism Or A Money Grab?

My consumer brain questions if Nike’s bold Colin Kaepernick ad was a good move.   My marketer brain found the numbers why it was a smart one.  Since the numbers are on Nike’s side, is it altruism or a money grab driving this political stance?

“Two-thirds of Nike consumers are under the age of 35. A younger consumer who can afford $150 Flyknit racers likely has substantial disposable income and lives in a city. The term for this cohort? Progressive. Of the $20B international customer base, how many believe the US is currently a “beacon on a hill” and is handling race issues well? I’ll speculate, none. Nike has risked $1-3B in business to strengthen their relationship with consumers who account for $32-34B of their franchise. The math? Nike just did it.”

Brand Moves – L2Inc


Gender, Shopping, Transparency, Trends, Uncategorized

Brands And Retailers Take A Stand On The “Pink Tax”

The Pink Tax is a business practice where women pay more for the same goods and services as men.

USA Today reports that retailers charge:

  • Four percent more for girl’s clothing;
  • Seven percent more for girl’s toys and accessories;
  • Eight percent more for women’s clothing; and
  • 13 percent more for women’s personal care products.

And feminine health products, an absolute necessity, is taxed.  States and brands are changing the system and bring light to the issue.

  • In 2016, a State of New York consumer study cited that personal products with female-oriented packaging (read: pink) cost up to 13% more than male-oriented ones (read: blue) despite being the same dosage and quantity.  The result is NYS effectively ended the tampon tax in 2016 indicating they are not luxury items.
  • In 2016, California introduced a bill that would outlaw gender-based pricing.
  • Billie, a woman-oriented shaving company, does not charge more for feminine items.
  • Boxed.com publicly refuted the pink tax and now absorbs the additional costs of women’s goods instead of passing excess charges along to female consumers.
  • Burger King called out the Pink Tax in this example of charging 2.39 more for “Chick Fries” served in a pink box.


Pink Tax Makes Women Pay More – USAToday

Retailers Standing Out Vetoing The Pink Tax – RetailWire

NYS Study of Gender Pricing – NYC.gov

Burger King Chick Tax YouTube

Edelman, Social, Transparency, Uncategorized

Consumers Want Brands To Pressure Social Media Transparency, But Can The Tail Wag The Dog?

From the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report, of nine countries: Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and the United States:

Over 50% of social media users don’t trust social media companies to behave responsibly with the information they collect about me.

In return, they expect brands to become gatekeeper to keep social media properties accountable.  Surveyed users believe that brands should pressure social on the following issues:

83% believe brands have a strong obligation to protect personal data


  • 71% believe brands should ensure personal data is protected and used ethically
  • 70% believe brands should do more about false information and fake news
  • 58% believe brands should protect users from offensive/harmful content (whether on their own posts or in general was not stated)

Evidence of outrage and threats of boycotts from watchdog groups spans both sides of the political aside resulting in brands avoiding media properties like Breitbart online and Full Frontal Samantha Bee.

Advertising on a selected media property is one thing but “next to/near to” content control is another.  If brands are not proactive in how they use social media, there is a lot to lose.

  • 48% believe it’s a brand’s fault if its advertising appears next to hate speech, violent or sexually inappropriate content on web pages
  • 47% believe that the points of view near a brand’s advertising and marketing message are an indication of that brands values and what it stands for

From an interdependency standpoint, I support a fully accountable media system, but the flaw in consumer perception is that social media is too big and powerful a machine for the little guy consumer to fix, whereas it’s really the opposite.  The consumer is the dog, the lead, the influencer and protecting ourselves, critically thinking about news information and reporting social media violence is the consumer’s responsibility, just as much the brands and other feeders of the machine.

Edelman 2018 Trust Barometer Social Media Report