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Top 8 Most ‘Positive’ Controversial Marketing Campaigns Of All Time

| Published on December 27, 2019

Living in the 21st century, the best way to create a buzz about yourself in the market is to start a controversy. Controversy can be a very effective way of marketing. To stand out in the market you cannot always play safe, sometimes offbeat and controversial campaigns create an affair that people want to share.

Creating the right buzz is not an easy job as it involves a lot of risks. Proper timing and parity with the audience have to be maintained which gets people excited about your brand. Some of the controversial campaigns are mentioned below.

1. Nike’s “Believe in Something”

Top 8 Most 'Positive' Controversial Marketing Campaigns Of All Time

Colin Kaepernick ex-NFL quarterback was featured as the center in this advertisement which made it one of the most controversial advertisements in recent memory. This campaign was a hit among Millennials and Gen Z consumers as it took a stand on social justice issues. Sales were increased by 31 percent along with a rise in the stock price.

2. Burger King’s “Whopper Neutrality”

A fast-food network is known for providing fast and delicious hamburgers waded into net neutrality and started charging premiums from its customers who wanted to get their meals quickly. This was done to explain the new rules, especially for angry and confused customers. This advertisement video got more than 4.6 million views on YouTube.

3. Weight Watchers partnership with DJ Khaled

In an odd partnership music star DJ Khaled became the official social media ambassador with Weight Watchers to redo their image and reach out to new people. This campaign had a positive impact and the share prices rose by 6 percent.

4. Gillette’s “We Believe: The Best Men Can Be”


This advertisement challenged the stereotypes and noxious masculinity. It had both positive and negative effects. It has over 30 million views over the internet and appealed more to women and was highly appreciated by Millennials because of their contribution to society.

5. Anheuser-Busch’s “Born the Hard Way”

It was a campaign to remind people that America was built for people who had the dream of a greater life. This was also a reminder that Budweiser an all American beer company had immigrant roots. This campaign became the most-watched Super Bowl advertisement with more than 21.7 million views online within three days.

6. Airbnb’s #WeAccept

This campaign was adopted from the idea of the Syrian refugee crisis and highlights Airbnb’s commitment to providing houses to people in need, refugees, and victims of natural disasters. It received as much as 15,400 volunteer signups.

7. Equinox’s “Commit to Something”

This campaign challenged cultural issues and motivated people to change their way of living. It gave ideas for topics that led to cultural conservation and achieved 735 million media impressions that led to an increase in sales by 81 percent.

8. Poo-Pourri’s “Girls Don’t Poop”

It was a campaign that did not resort to platitude images of rose petals and refreshing mountain sets. This advertisement featured a stylish woman sitting on a toilet and sharing the challenges of using the bathroom. It was humorous and relatable and aimed to tell people not to hold back. It led to massive exposure and has more than 40 million views on YouTube.

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