Social media's influence has made it easier than ever before for businesses to find themselves embroiled in political discussions - often leading to catastrophic results.
I had a pet shop client in the middle of a boycott. It cost them. They had to pull out whole lines of products and close much of their Facebook page. What could they do as they had a person doing this?
The Impact of Political Issues on Businesses
A recent report reveals a startling statistic: 25% to 41% of the population may stop doing business with a company if they disagree with its politics. Furthermore, a significant 59% of those who leave never return. These figures show the potentially severe consequences of mixing business with politics.
The Target Controversy now
One notable case now exemplifies the risks of political entanglement is Target, a popular retailer in the United States. Target found itself in America's culture wars due to its latest collection of Pride-themed clothing. While many individuals supported this initiative, some strongly disagreed. This led to a boycott against Target. Soon a song was released in support of the boycott against Target. The song quickly gained popularity online, amassing over three million views and climbing to #6 on the iTunes music charts. It was pulled out of youtube but you can get from the link above.
The repercussions of the boycott against Target were huge. The company's stock experienced a staggering 14% drop in value, resulting in an estimated loss of $10.1 billion in valuation. This highlights the tangible impact of political controversies on a business's bottom line.
Escalation to Threats and Violence
Unfortunately, it gets worse. Supporters of the LGBTQ+ community responded by issuing bomb threats against Target stores. Bomb threats in the US are not a bluff.
The Case Against Business Involvement in Controversial Issues
The risks associated with getting involved in controversial issues are highlighted by the significant financial losses, damaged reputation, and potential for violent outbursts experienced by Target.
Businesses should exercise caution when addressing sensitive topics.