Recently Anheuser-Busch released a statement on the NFL ‘kneeling’ controversy and in 110 or so words said absolutely nothing.
At Anheuser-Busch we have a long heritage of supporting the institutions and values that have made America so strong. That includes our armed forces and the national anthem as well as diversity, equality and freedom of speech.
We proudly employ over 1,100 military veterans and we work every day to create an inclusive environment for all of our employees. Because only together can we achieve our dream of bringing people together for a better world.
We have many long-term sports partnerships, including our NFL sponsorship, and while we may not agree on everything, we still believe in the power of sport to bring people together and overcome their differences.
Other well-known companies such as Bose, Papa Johns, Ford and Nike also released generic statements. Check them out in this Business Insider article.
While I don’t fault these companies for towing the line and making the choice to not alienate sections of their customer base, I do think it is time for them to actually say or do something.
Whether you make a choice based off your company’s core values or you reach out to your customers to decide how you should react; just do something.
Anheuser-Busch reached out to customers for their feedback by setting up a toll-free number that allowed the public to call in and voice their opinions. These calls will undoubtedly be the decision maker on whether they pull their sponsorship of the NFL or not.
A brand needs to make the decision that is best in line with their culture, because if you don’t stay true to that then everything suffers. Let’s face it, you will never make everyone happy and the surest way to fail is to try and do just that.
What do you think?