When Your Brand Should Speak Out About Social Issues
With everything that’s been going on in the world today, I thought this conversation needed to happen–and there is no one better to have it with than Sharon McMahon from @sharonsaysso. She is America’s Government Teacher where she shares facts and thoughts on politics and history without all the hate. I had the chance to talk with her about when your brand should speak out about social issues. Because I know I can’t be the only brand that wonders when I should speak out and when I should keep quiet.
If you haven’t heard of Sharon McMahon, take this as your sign to give her a follow and use her as your trusted source for politics and current events! (Click here to learn a little bit more about her background and how she became an influencer for politics.) She is seriously so amazing and the way she talks about social issues and other things happening around the world is a breath of fresh air.
It can be hard to know what to do in the midst of a crisis–no matter if it’s happening on a global level or in your hometown. It can especially be challenging to know what to do as a business. How do you know what to say, if you should say something, how to share your thoughts without coming off as the expert of the situation? So many valid questions and worries–and we will cover all of that in this post. If you have the time, I recommend listening to the podcast episode where you will get even more answers and information on this topic. But we will definitely cover the basics in this blog post. Let’s get started!
Tips & Tricks for Knowing When Your Brand Should Speak Out About Social Issues
If you struggle with knowing when to speak out about social issues, start by deciding what your brand’s values are. We can learn from Sharon’s example and her beliefs. She said she has a lot of space in her mind for people who think differently than she does. However, she will never compromise on the inherent value of human beings and their need for basic survival.
When you’re struggling on whether or not to speak out, always go back to the humanity in the world. What do people need? Regardless of their skin color, station in life, the country they were born in, etc.–what do they really need? All people need food, shelter, water, love, and physical safety. These are all things that people are willing to get behind.
Along with that, here are 3 tips that should help you know when your brand should speak out about social issues.
Tip #1: If the Social Issue Directly Impacts the People in your Community
If something happens in the world that directly affects the people you serve, then this is a great opportunity for you to use your influence for good and help lift people up. While brands are not the ones people should look to for guidance during crises or social issues, they often do. So you might as well take that chance to influence those in your community for good. And you showing genuine concern and action on the social issue will only bring more trust and loyalty from those in your community.
Tip #2: If the Social Issue is Happening in Your Hometown
This is the time when you should most likely speak up about the social issue. For example, if there was a natural disaster in your hometown, you could raise awareness and funds by advertising that a certain percentage of sales will be donated to help people in your community. This is just one of the many ways you can speak out. Remember, it does not have to be this grand act of service that solves everyone’s problems. But something is always better than nothing when it comes to serving those in need.
Tip #3: If You Care Enough About the Social Issue to Dedicate Content Time to It
It takes a lot of time and energy to plan out your content. When something happens in the world that you feel like you should speak about, you need to make sure it’s worth it to you to dedicate content time to it. While you may not be the expert on the social issue happening, your brand could be another source of hope and help for those in need.
With that being said, you can find ways to switch around your content plan so you can fit in some things that revolve around the social issue. You can even plan ahead for this occurrence. And when we say plan ahead, we mean deciding now what social issues your brand will speak out on and what that response will look like. That way you aren’t scrambling on what to say when the time comes. You’ll be able to have a planned-out response and you can tweak it to match what the exact issue is on when the time comes.
How Your Brand Should Speak Out About Social Issues
There are so many simple things you can do to raise awareness or support social issues happening around you. Here’s a list to help you get started:
- Send donations
- Pour out condolences
- Point people to resources that are helping the situation and align with your brand’s values
- Curate a small selection of resources for people to learn more about what’s happening
- Donate a percentage of your sales to an organization that is helping the victims in need
The main thing to keep in mind is little things make a big difference. You can put this thought into action by doing for one person that you wish you could do for everyone. Do something for one family in need that you wish the rest of the world would do for each other. And then trust in the impact this will have. If everyone is doing something for someone then that is going to have unimaginable ripple effects.
When Your Brand Should Speak Out About Social Issues
Wasn’t this post amazing? Sharon’s tips on when your brand should speak out about social issues are so helpful, aren’t they? I know I’ll be using them when the situation arises. I want to take the time to remind all of you that you are incredible. You are doing things that matter, so trust in the work you feel called to do. There’s no one else who will do it like you.
When you feel scared or unsure of how to move forward, take a deep breath and trust your inner voice. Maybe even say a little prayer. There is so much good you can do and I will always be here to cheer you on! If you want some extra support and direction, you can join my Money Makers Coaching Group. Otherwise, give me a follow on Instagram @iammichellegifford. If you liked this post, please share it with a friend or two that you think it would help!