In 2017, Audi faced a lot of backlash for including humiliating content in an advertisement featured in China.
In the advertisement, while a couple is at the altar ready to take wedding vows, the groom’s mother walks up to the bride and checks her features. The message – “an important decision must be made carefully.” Testing a car analogous to testing a bride.
The advertisement and the makers were clearly not spared any mercy by the audience.
There are so many things that can go wrong with content marketing. For example, not defining target audience, not streamlining content with purpose, not experimenting with ideas; but none of it as brutal as glorifying stereotypes.
If you ask me, one thing that you should absolutely refrain while doing content marketing is – trying too hard to please – be it your audience or yourself.
When Dolce & Gabbana started receiving counterblasts from audience for the statement – I’m thin & Gorgeous and, on one of its products, its co-founder made matters worse by taking it to social media and responding “u think is better to be fat full of hamburger??? Stupid.”
It’s taken the world a long time to be where it is. As a content marketer, make mistakes, experiment, fall and learn. But respect the culture and the progress of the society you are living in.
Content marketing, by virtue of its nature, is about sharing value and solutions to the audience. With every piece of content that you share, reflect those values.
It takes several footsteps to reach the top and one misstep to stumble and fall. Be genuine in your intent and content. Hire people who share your values. Share your values with people you hire. There is a difference and both are significant to a brand’s success.
Give equal respect to your content, your audience and your community.