When Marketers Go Too Far

Posted on September 12, 2014 by - Uncategorized

It’s a day after September 11, the anniversary of when thousands of Americans lost their lives through a horrific tragedy. But that fact was lost on a lot of advertisers, big corporations and marketers who wanted to use the date as a means to spread their brand and increase profits.

AT&T recently released a statement apologizing for using the events of 9/11 to spread their brand and engage current and future consumers.

From Randall Stephenson, CEO and chairman at AT&T: “It is a day that should never be forgotten and never, ever commercialized. I commit AT&T to this standard as we move forward.”

Sorry Stephenson, but it’s a little late for that apology. Can’t wait to see what AT&T does for next year’s Flag Day. But it wouldn’t be fair to just point out the shortcomings of one company—many are guilty spanning several different holidays and days of remembrance.

“We apologize for our recent tweet in remembrance of Pearl Harbor Day. We meant to pay respect, not to offend,” wrote SpaghettiOs on their Twitter timeline.

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Consumers have an obligation as well. If you see a cheesy “never forget” next to a brand, logo or product, don’t like it. Report it. Companies should honor our country without trying to grow their profit margins.

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