The month of June celebrates the LGBTQ+ community - typically celebrated with month-long parades and events. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the continued global protests after George Floyd's death, typical celebrations cannot take place and/or seem a little tone-deaf.
According to Mintel's research on marketing to LGBTQ+ communities, more than half of LGBTQ+ consumers feel that brands’ Pride marketing and merchandising in 2019 were inauthentic. Brands have been called out on doing the bare minimum for the community such as released rainbow-edition products. Brands who fail to support the LGBTQ+ community throughout the year, and only show up in June with inauthentic campaigns, have left consumers feeling disappointed.
Brands have been taking their LGBTQ+ celebrations online. Reebok's "All Types of Love" collection and campaign "Proud Notes" highlights the individual stories of those within the LGBTQ+ community. In the "Proud Notes" campaign, Reebok features five different LGBTQ+ activists and influencers from various backgrounds and upbringings. Reebok invites consumers to celebrate Pride this year by telling their own LGBTQ+ friends and family why they are proud of them.
Brands like Reebok, have taken the opportunity to utilise their voice and their platform to help those in the LGBTQ+ community. Brands should not shy away from 'celebrations' due to the restrictions of COVID-19 and global BLM protests. However, they should use this as an opportunity to participate in genuine activism rather than just another 'project' to earn money.