This article made me think about mixed race, relationships, media, and advertisement. Check out the link below!
Posted by bluesharpie92 on June 7, 2013 in Uncategorized
June 7, 2013 at 4:30 pm
I saw this story a while ago, and I really appreciate a brand like Cheerios, which usually targets families in their advertisements, for taking a risk and representing a mixed-race family in their ad. It’s great that they believed they were “reflecting an American family,” and were not afraid to go through with it. I think it’s a good step towards showing society that mixed-race is not something abnormal. This family represented in the Cheerios ad lives in a nice house, there is a mother, a father, a child–all aspects of the typical American dream. It shows that it doesn’t matter what skin color people are; we are people, and we have so much in common.
June 7, 2013 at 8:29 pm
In the HuffPo article, Allen Adamson, managing director of a branding firm, said “The traditional approach depicting the old `Leave it to Beaver’ family, while offending no one, is not very realistic.” I agree that the “Leave It to Beaver” family is unrealistic, but I highly doubt that it was offending no one. As we’ve discussed this term, it can be painful not to see yourself represented in the media. After Bill Imada’s lecture, we talked about how Met Life didn’t suddenly start using people of color in their advertisements out of the goodness of its corporate heart–the company saw a gap in the market and went after it. I expect the same is true of Cheerios, and/or they received enough requests from customers for more representative casting. I think this ad is great (and so cute–when the dad wakes up and the Cheerios spill, my own heart almost burst!), and Cheerios undoubtably took a big important step here. But we need to recognize that it probably was a consumer-driven change rather than a corporate-driven one. I asked this after Bill Imada’s talk, and I’ll ask it again now: do companies have any responsibility to use their media influence to promote diversity, etc., or is it only right that they wait to make advancements until their customers demand it?
June 7, 2013 at 10:34 pm
Personally, I was ecstatic to see this video from Cheerios. For once, a family somewhat resembling what I grew up in was being represented in a TV commercial! But of course, the controversy started. Honestly, it hurt my heart so much to see so many negative reactions to something that is my every day reality, as I imagine millions of people feel everyday. It confuses me that we must commend a brand like Cheerios for ‘taking a risk” as Lily said. Does it matter if the choice was a consumer-driven one, as Kelsey suggests? Is it worth something that Cheerios was willing to face the backlash? Maybe I’ll be more impresses when/if they come out with a second one. It reminds me of JCPenney’s choice to feature a lesbian couple in a mother’s day ad (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jenny-block/one-million-moms-jcpenney-lesbian-ad_b_1469669.html) and then follow up that backlash with a gay couple on a father’s day ad (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jenny-block/one-million-moms-jcpenney-lesbian-ad_b_1469669.html). That, to me, shows support, regardless of it started out as consumer-driven– obviously corporate wanted to voice their unwavering support too.
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