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5 Famous Brands Who Got Into Major Controversies For Being Insensitive

| Published on March 10, 2019

Marketing strategies are meant to increase the revenue of a company and promote its products in the best form possible.

But not every time a marketing plan is successful enough to promote the towards the good, instead it sometimes puts the brand into grave trouble like the luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana which raged a controversy with its deemed racist promotional videos last year.

Let us go through five other brands which got into similar trouble.

1. Amazon

The most popular e-commerce giant, Amazon, jumped into trouble for its new range of baby clothes, mugs and bags with the slogan ‘Slavery gets sh*t done’ and an image of the pyramids.

All such products had to be taken off from the website after activists and shoppers, used the incident to relate it with modern-day slavery in certain parts of the world.

2. H&M

The brand started off 2018 with a lot of criticisms after they uploaded a picture of a black child wearing a hoodie with the slogan ‘coolest monkey in the jungle’ on its online platform.

Criticisms made them pull off the shirt from US site. “… we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally”, was the reply by the company.

3. Dove

The popular beauty brand, Dove, invited a lot of criticisms and trouble with its insensitive commercial featuring a black woman in a brown shirt, taking her shirt off, to turn in a white woman with a light shirt.

Also Read: 10 Indian Print And Television Advertisements That Were Banned Due To Huge Controversies

The commercial received outcry for its racist manner. A spokesperson for Dove responded that the commercial “was intended to convey that Dove Body Wash is for every woman and is a celebration of diversity, but we got it wrong and, as a result, offended many people.

4. Nivea

Nivea in April 2017 had raged controversies for its marketing slogan ‘white is purity’. The brand had to apologize for the insensitive commercial, claiming that “diversity and equal opportunity are crucial values of Nivea”.

Even in 2011 controversy, the brand had received criticisms for featuring a chic black male clutching the afro of a mannequin’s head with the tagline ‘re-civilize yourself’.

5. Pepsi

Pepsi wanted to market their product by equating all the cultures of the world together by Kendel Jenner Ad but it turned out to be outrageous for it featured attractive young people with generic protest signs laughing and high-fiving.

In the end, a police offer accepts a Pepsi can from Jenner, while everyone around grins and applauds.
Six months later PepsiCo president Brad Jakeman stepped down, telling the spot was “the most gut-wrenching experience of my career.”

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