Evaluating Controversial Marketing: Path to Success?

US retailers recorded a sharp increase in sales in January, after an unexpected drop the previous month – Copyright AFP/File ludovic MARIN

In a previous article, Featured digital newspaper research of the Solopress brand company. The release was shared with Digital newspaper.

This examined the impact of controversial marketing and how, if successful, it can resonate with the public and ensure the economic success of the business. In particular, social media plays an important role in promoting social media messages.

The central example used was that of women’s health brand Elvie, which recently enjoyed considerable social media success with its provocative 2022 campaign normalizing female incontinence in sports.

To demonstrate the impact, Elvie’s “Leaks Happen” campaign has sparked conversations around the world regarding female incontinence, with content attached to #LeaksHappen receiving 2.9 million views on TikTok.

Additionally, searches for “Elvie Trainer review” have increased by 60% and searches for “Elvie Curve” (two of the brand’s flagship products) have increased by 70% according to Google Trends since the campaign launched.

Marketing success is measured in different ways using a variety of metrics depending on a brand’s goals. This is where using controversial ads can make things better or worse.

For example, in the recent case of KFC, success was based on mitigating severe brand damage. That’s when the company, synonymous with various chicken products, ran out of chicken.

Alternatively, an impactful campaign video achieves viral status, sparking meaningful discussions and improving a brand’s visibility. Such was the case with Always’s #LikeAGirl campaign. Always’s short video ad depicted a casting call with young women, men, boys and girls who were asked to pretend to run, fight and throw like a girl.

From there, 94% of those surveyed by Always agreed that their #LikeAGirl campaign encouraged girls to be more confident and 70% of women and 60% of men said the video changed their perception of expression.” like a girl”.

Additionally, #LikeAGirl received over 1,100 earned media placements and 4.4 billion impressions in the first three months of the campaign’s launch with positive sentiment reaching 96%.

There are, however, some crucial rules for successful controversial campaigns, such as ensuring the timing is right and the tone is appropriate to prevent the ad from causing a social media storm or falling on the ears of a deaf.

It’s also worth noting the continued value of print media when it comes to engaging in dialogue, and here some brands can successfully use physical print alongside hashtags to drive the conversation on social media.