The Brand Impact of Socially Conscious Advertising


While the evidence suggests that brands who engage in socially conscious advertising are more successful, we’d like to focus on how conscious advertising links core ethical values into the brand image

We launched a YouTube series at Channel Factory that provides an open platform to discuss this issue. “Conscious Conversations” is a part of our ongoing Conscious Project, an initiative that helps brands like yours consciously invest their media dollars and navigate the complexities of social platforms. 

What is conscious advertising?

Brands advertise in a socially conscious manner when they acknowledge their core beliefs and values, which connect those values to the company’s bottom line. Despite public trends or customer opinions, the brands hold steadfast to their values and beliefs. This signals integrity to customers and the general public. 

Socially conscious ads openly focus on an altruistic or social message. Examples include climate change, child endangerment, or voting rights. Such advertising can be subtle and soft or risky and bold. 

What are some examples of conscious marketing? 

The best socially conscious advertising is those ads that make an unforgettable statement. These take the viewers out of their own heads for a moment with jarring visuals, engaging content, and bold execution. They entertain, and their message stays with the viewer long after the commercial is over. Let’s explore three such ads that deftly link their brand’s core ethics with the brand itself. 

1. Like A Girl: This engages an audience without preaching. A simple concept — exploring the “like a girl” trope — elicits thinking, laughter, and a swelling of pride for young girls everywhere. This is about more than just selling sanitary napkins. It aims to encourage a different kind of thinking and succeeds. 

2. The Wind: This commercial is made with the artistry of a filmmaker. In the form of a man, the wind has an existential crisis and feels completely misunderstood. Then one day, he discovers a meaningful purpose in his life: powering windmills. The actor’s performance, combined with expert cinematography and whimsical musical score, leaves the audience looking at wind energy uniquely positively.

3. Expletive Interest: Airbnb’s slightly risky ad was so well-done, with beautiful imagery, smiling people, and lighthearted music, that it remains with the viewer long after the commercial ends. It also has a slightly edgy sense of humor that appeals to customers and welcomes them in. They succeed in linking an empathic worldview and inclusiveness to their brand. 

How does it work?

Meaningful socially conscious ads consistently hold the viewer’s interest from first impression through purchase or engagement and beyond. 

A conscious brand elicits stronger feelings than brands that don’t align their values with their advertising. People feel more emotionally connected with businesses that take a moral stand, especially today. That’s the way it works. Socially conscious ads get a customer’s attention and appeal to their emotions. This, in turn, gets people’s brains working to think in different ways. Thoughtful ads elicit thoughtful responses. 

Enhance your brand by creating socially conscious advertising with Channel Factory.