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Managing the Tide Marketing to Controversial Demographics. Overview. Recently, our business culture has seen increasing controversy between the economic viability of the gay market versus the push for moral values and a strict definition of marriage.

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Managing the tide marketing to controversial demographics l.jpg

Managing the TideMarketing to Controversial Demographics


Overview l.jpg
Overview

  • Recently, our business culture has seen increasing controversy between the economic viability of the gay market versus the push for moral values and a strict definition of marriage.

  • Proctor & Gamble has been thrust to the forefront of this marketing movement by the American Family Association’s concerns of decaying American family values due to increased gay advocacy by corporate America.



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Background of P&G

  • Founded in 1837 P&G has built its business on its brands and family oriented reputation.

  • Focusing on high quality consumer products P&G has produced multiple million dollar brands including Tide and Pantene.

  • The company is also well known as a division leader in many product categories.

  • P&G lists Leadership, Integrity, Trust, Ownership and Passion for Winning as its core values.

  • The P&G community consists of nearly 98,000 people working in almost 80 countries worldwide.


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Background of P&G

  • On its website P&G states:

    “We Show Respect for All Individuals

    *We believe that all individuals can and want to contribute to their fullest potential.

    *We value differences.

    *We inspire and enable people to achieve high expectations, standards, and challenging goals.

    *We are honest with people about their performance.”



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Background of AFA

  • A non-profit organization founded by Don Wildmon, a former Methodist pastor, in 1977.

  • AFA claims 2,317,120 members.

  • Claiming to stand for traditional American values, it closely monitors the actions of the media, particularly the entertainment industry, and blames the media's influence on decreasing American values.

  • AFA provides its members mailing, e-mail alerts to hot button issues and links to legislative websites and petition forms.


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Background of AFA

AFA’s website states:

  • “We believe in holding accountable the companies which sponsor programs attacking traditional family values. We also believe in commending those companies which act responsibly regarding programs they support.”

  • “Disney/ABC cancels the pro-homosexual show Ellen, for "lack of ratings." AFA led the campaign to encourage responsible advertisers to drop from the show.”

  • “Does AFA Hate Homosexuals?Absolutely Not! The same Holy Bible that calls us to reject sin, calls us to love our neighbor. It is that love that motivates us to expose the misrepresentation of the radical homosexual agenda and stop its spread though our culture.”


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P&G Letter to Cincinnati Employees

  • P&G supported the repeal of Article 12, which prevents gays and lesbians from seeking protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

  • P&G sent a statement to employees in Cincinnati explaining its reasoning for supporting the repeal.



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About the Ad

  • It ran in 2000 in Xtra, a Toronto gay newspaper.

  • It never ran in any other countries including the United States.

  • It was targeted by AFA as being an intentional advocate for homosexuality in September 2004.


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Response from AFA

  • After September 2004, AFA announced a campaign to boycott the three major P&G products: Tide, Crest, and Pampers.

  • Petitions for the boycott were sent to several Christian organizations and is included on their website’s home page.


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Response from P&G

  • P&G spokesman Doug Shelton stated that the company would not change its position on the repeal of Article 12, (Crary, 2004).

  • However, Shelton said that P&G believes the ad in Xtra was a mistake and “even if the ad had featured heterosexuals, it never should have run – it was in violation of our advertising guidelines,” (Crary, 2004).


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Why is This an Issue?

  • Both AFA and P&G target family-oriented consumers with traditional values.

  • A part of P&G’s target market is middle to upper class consumers who desire quality products. The gay and lesbian market falls into this target audience.

  • So how does P&G balance its commitment to diversity and inclusion with the interests of its more conservative consumers?


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