All Articles Tagged "P&G"
By now most African-American women are aware of the My Black Is Beautiful initiative by Procter & Gamble. Seven years running, the campaign presented a screening of Imagine a Future in conjunction with the Tribeca Film Festival, which is taking place now. The film aims to empower African-American women and addresses such complex issues as beauty, self-esteem, and skin tone.
“I didn’t look like what I saw in a magazine,” says Dover, Del., teenager Janet Goldsboro, who is in the documentary. “I look different from all my cousins. I had dark features, dark hair, dark eyes, big nose and big lips, and I used to get made fun of because of how I looked.”
She adds: “Boys say, ‘I like the light-skinned girls,’ or, ‘I like white girls because I want my baby to come out pretty.’ And that hurts you because it makes you feel like you’re ugly looking.”
The documentary was co-directed by Shola Lynch, whose documentary Free Angela and All Political Prisoners about Angela Davis is in theaters now and getting rave reviews. Record company executive Lisa Cortes co-directed and produced the documentary. Cortez was an executive producer for the Oscar-winning movie Precious.
The 30-minute documentary will screen on BET on July 5.
According to The New York Times, the filmmakers discovered Goldsboro through Black Girls Rock!, the Brooklyn nonprofit with programs including a summer leadership camp that Goldsboro attended last year, which has the annual star-studded televised event you’ve no doubt watched. Procter & Gamble supports Black Girls Rock! financially through My Black Is Beautiful.
The film also follows Goldsboro’s visit to South Africa and includes interviews with such dynamic women as writer/cultural critic Michaela Angela Davis, Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas, and Melissa Harris-Perry, the MSNBC host.
While in South Africa, the issue of skin color is also raised. “In the documentary, Ms. Goldsboro visits a market in Johannesburg with Lebogang Mashile, a poet, actress and activist, and says, ‘I heard that in South Africa that skin bleaching is a big problem here?’” reports the newspaper. To which Mashile replies: “It’s been a problem for a long time. It’s self-hate, it’s not having enough mirrors that affirm you.”
The Times notes that the film fails to mention that Olay, a Procter & Gamble brand, markets skin-lightening products worldwide. Their White Radiance is sold in such countries as Malaysia and Singapore; another, Natural White, is sold in India, United Arab Emirates and elsewhere.
And in South Africa, Olay just recently introduced a skin-lightening line called Even & Smooth. “A new commercial features Gail Nkoane, a singer and actress, who applies the product and is instantly bathed in light, giving the effect of her skin becoming several shades lighter,” writes the Times. Do you think this makes a difference? Feel free to post your thoughts in the comments.
More than just a film, Imagine A Future, is its own campaign that includes donations made to the United Negro College Fund ($100,000 worth), sponsorship of the Black Girls Rock! Queens Camp, workshops, and more. You can learn more about the campaign on its Facebook page.
To celebrate her new book Profit With Purpose: A Marketer’s Guide to Delivering Purpose-Driven Campaigns to Multicultural Audiences, author and EGAMI Consulting Group founder Teneshia Jackson Warner teamed up with Dinner With Bevy‘s Bevy Smith for a dinner party/awards ceremony/”discotheque” (Smith’s word) at New York’s Beauty & Essex. The soiree was also focused on the cause-related work of the night’s honorees: P&G’s program My Black is Beautiful; Budget Fashionista and founder of digitalundivided (DID), Kathryn Finney; Black Girls Rock! founder Beverly Bond; celebrity stylist and host of ABC World News’ Cause Celeb with Phillip Bloch, Phillip Bloch; Disney’s Dreamers Academy, a program working in partnership with Essence and Steve Harvey to help high school students reach their career goals; and chef/reality TV star Chef Roble.
We’re going to have more from Warner about cause marketing and her book later this week. But the need for good works in the world is strong enough that we wanted to give the awards ceremony its own little shout out.
The 2012 Purpose Awards Dinner (#profitwithpurpose) was meant, according to the evening’s program, to celebrate with “a night of purpose” and “continue to drive the conversation.” The evening highlighted the social responsibility initiatives of the honorees, and the innovative approach with which they’re tackling their businesses, organizations, or passion projects.
When accepting his award, Bloch said, “When someone shines a light, we all shine a little brighter,” speaking to why it’s important for everyone to do what they can and then cheer that work to take it even further.
But before the accolades, one has to get started. In her acceptance speech, Bond said she only wanted to make a cool t-shirt when she started. Today, Black Girls Rock! has a televised awards ceremony that uplifts not just young girls, but women also.
When presenting the award, Warner thanked Bond for answering her calling. “We’re so happy that you said yes,” said Warner.
“We’re all connected and we’re all affected,” said Bond during her acceptance speech.
And if that wasn’t enough, there was good food, good music (Talib Kweli was DJing, with Bond jumping into the booth for a few minutes), and cocktails aplenty. Party with a purpose…
Let me start by saying I think it’s great when famous people use their celebrity for good causes. But it’s also very troubling when those efforts end up being more about the celeb than the actual effort and the campaigns are done in a way that belittle the severity of the situation and the real people dealing with the issue they’re discussing. That is clearly the case with Lala Anthony’s Pantene Beautiful Lengths campaign.
This is the advertisement for the effort aimed at raising awareness and money for breast cancer early detection and research. It may be hard to read the print so let me explain what’s going on. The ad reads:
A woman’s hair is her crowning glory, and Lala is covering hers up for a cure. The television personality is taking a stand to help raise awareness by putting herself in the shoes of a cancer patient and covering up her locks.
Lala will only unveil her hair if she receives 10K tweets…etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.
Where do I begin?
Given that Pantene is a line of hair products, it makes sense to launch a campaign related to hair, but a well-done campaign dedicated to breast cancer this is not. Wearing a beanie, or a hat, or a scarf or anything along those lines is nowhere near equivalent to “putting oneself in the shoes of a cancer patient.” While the physical side of losing one’s hair while undergoing chemotherapy is certainly a major concern for most women with breast cancer who have to go that treatment route, it is hardly their most primary concern. Not to mention simply covering your hair versus losing it because your body is being pumped with radiation and other chemicals in an attempt to save your life are two very different things. Wearing a hat is a style choice at best, having your hair fall out as a result of being diagnosed with a deadly disease is an emotionally, mentally, and physically trying experience that should not be trivialized in this manner.
Adding more insult to injury is the fact that Lala’s hair isn’t even fully covered in this advertisement. She has a thick bang hanging out one side of the front of her beanie and a perfect hairline on the other. That’s not something a woman undergoing chemo could do. And the irony of pushing a product titled “Beautiful Lengths” is not lost on me. Were this a product that was specifically tied to breast cancer (other than having a pink lid) I could get behind this. But it comes off as beyond insensitive to push “visibly stronger, longer hair” in this campaign, even if the point is that buying this product will help support breast cancer research and real-hair wig donations.
Furthermore, the issue at hand has clearly become more about Lala and #BeautifulLengths than breast cancer, mastectomies, and sick, balding women. Lala will only unveil her hair if she receives 10,000 tweets using the hashtag #BeautifulLengths? One, who is checking for her hair like that? And two, why not tweet something more meaningful (to someone other than Pantene) like early detection or breast cancer awareness or something along those lines? And adding more insult to injury is Lala’s Instagram which shows numerous pictures of her with her hair clearly down and uncovered. Where’s the transparency? Where’s the commitment to the cause? Where is the true concern for breast cancer because it’s a horrible disease affecting hundreds of thousands of women every year not because it’s free publicity?
I don’t doubt that this campaign started off with good intentions, but somewhere along the lines things took a sharp left. It’s disappointing that between LaLa, Pantene, P&G, and all the other marketing and PR people involved, they couldn’t see what a mess of an idea this is. Yes a woman’s hair may be her crowning glory, but let’s not forget that we are also not our hair. Tweeting to help unveil Lala’s beauty i.e. her hair implies that women with cancer, and consequently without their hair, have lost their beauty. That is far from the message of hope these women need to hear. The next time these “great minds” get together to plan a public awareness campaign I need them not to think alike because the result is catastrophic. I would encourage them to instead go to #BeautifulLengths to empower breast cancer patients rather than take a shortcut to shame.
What do you think about this campaign?
Black Girls Rock! (BGR) in partnership with the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and P&G’s My Black is Beautiful campaign has launched the Imagine a Future Project, a program that, according to BGR founder Beverly Bond, will “empower and touch the lives of one million girls over the course of three years.” Through this program, there will be a national and regional (and perhaps worldwide) push to continue BGR’s philanthropic work with and on behalf of African-American girls.
As you probably know, Black Girls Rock! is the nonprofit organization dedicated to mentoring and uplifting black girls while also tackling issues associated with media depictions of black women and girls. Even if you’re unfamiliar with the organization per se, you likely recognize the name from the BET awards show that airs annually. No doubt, you’ve heard of the United Negro College Fund (“A mind is a terrible thing to waste”), which has been around for more than 40 years. And perhaps you know My Black is Beautiful because you’re friends with it on Facebook. The campaign has 761,000 Facebook likes, a website and tons of exposure through P&G’s promotion. The partnership was facilitated by PR and marketing firms Egami Consulting Group and MSLGroup. If you’re unfamiliar with Egami, click here to watch our She’s The Boss video with CEO Teneshia Jackson Warner.
Bring them together and you have a program that targets and supports black women and girls in their personal lives and public portrayals.
A Partnership Focused on African-American Women and Girls
P&G’s My Black is Beautiful sponsored BGR Queens’ Camp for Leadership and Excellence, a two-week program that took place this month and hosted 50 girls between the ages of 13 and 17. On August 1, those 50 girls made a trip to Egami and MSLGroup, who hosted an event offering a “day in the life” of a multicultural PR agency like Egami.
“There’s an expectation for brands to have a presence in the communities in which they live,” Warner told us. “As we build campaigns, we’ll find synergies to bring in community partners.” Moreover, Egami wants to include staff members, which is why the firm participated in the event. And the young participants learned that the information they collect every day — what’s in, what’s new, what’s exciting — is just the stuff that’s critical to a career in PR.
According to Bond, she was approached with the idea for these sorts of partnered initiatives, something that happens quite often because of the unique, high-profile nature of her organization.
“We make sure people just aren’t supporting the TV show and the glam, but the work we do,” Bond says. Still, she says, she is the “majority owner” of BGR, the beating heart of the organization. “That’s probably the biggest misconception. BET doesn’t support our nonprofit,” she continues. “It’s tough getting people to recognize that we need the help. We’re doing everything that nonprofits should be doing, but it’s still tough.”
(Target Market News) — Ross Love, one of radio’s most successful and trailblazing entrepreneurs, died of an undisclosed caused at a hospital in Cincinnati hospital the morning of August 10th. He was 64 years old. Love moved into radio ownership in 1995 after leaving Procter & Gamble where he was vice president of marketing. The first acquisition for Love and his partners was WDBZ “The Buzz,” Cincinnati’s most popular black AM radio station. Over the next six year, his company, Blue Chip Broadcasting, would purchase 19 more stations targeted to African-American listeners across the Midwest, making it the largest black-owned radio company in the U.S.
Star power, self esteem and soft sell are the main ingredients of a wide-ranging Procter & Gamble effort to attract the enormous buying power of African-American women…
(AdAge) — Procter & Gamble Co. is leaning heavily on social media and cross-marketing its many brands as it expands to the general public an e-store built heavily around social media, following a four-month test with around 5,000 consumers, the company announced today.