Never before have we seen so many brands taking strong stands around what is happening in the political and cultural landscape. As politics, public policy, and human rights take center stage, and as consumers passionately embrace deeply divided ideologies, brands have not only reacted to the social climate, but in many cases they’ve also been cultural leaders.

What drives a brand to take a stand, and is the motivation mission-based or just good business? What causes one well-meaning attempt to backfire while another works like gangbusters, building good will for the brand behind it?

These are the questions this panel sought to answer during the “When Brands Take a Stand” panel at The Conference 2017 in Los Angeles on June 8. Time Magazine San Francisco Bureau Chief Katy Steinmetz moderates a panel including Peter Benedek, founding partner, board member, United Talent Agency; Kim Burdges, director of marketing & digital production, TBS’s Full Frontal with Samantha Bee; Brad Jenkins, managing director and executive producer, Funny Or Die DC; and Rajiv Menon, director of cultural strategy, Civic Entertainment Group.

RELATED: Brands Called to Take Stands in Turbulent Times

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