Having so many famous household brands under its name, Unilever is one of the top business giants in the world. Recently, it has announced to stop marketing and advertising on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, throughout the entire year of 2020 and have no plans at all to come back to social media marketing before 2021.
Not only Unilever, but many other organisations have also stopped spending on advertising on Facebook. This has been in the wake of the unfortunate event of the killing of George Floyd. All brands protesting together are playing their part in a major boycott. Ben & Jerry's ice cream, which is one of Unilever's individual brands has also called out for social issues regarding hatred against black people and white privilege. Procter & Gamble (P&G), which is another Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) company, has not yet announced ceasing their advertisements on social media, but they too have been considering the same, and have made it clear that their advertisements will in no way promote hatred and racism.
On the other hand, Twitter has remained silent and inactive on this sensitive matter and is hardly involved in the boycott campaigns. As a result, Unilever has completely blacklisted Twitter. It is highly likely that other companies will up their game as well and join Unilever in this battle against investing for advertisements on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. These social media platforms will face damage as their revenue downfalls, but how much that damage will impact them, is still uncertain.
All these boycotting measures have been taken as a part of the 'Stop Hate for Profit' campaign. The campaign has been initiated by major civil rights groups in the United States, to take strict action against Facebook's hate speech and misinformation after the sad case of George Floyd. The campaign has urged giant companies and brands to boycott advertising on Facebook and other social media platforms from July onwards.
In response to Unilever joining the boycott as well, Facebook as well has announced that it will also ban ads which promote racism or involve religious issues and campaigns, and 'tag' posts which are harmful. This is a massive win, as it is a change in Facebook's hate speech policies in light of the recent boycott by advertisers. The movement of 'Black Lives Matter' and hashtag BLM has taken over social media platforms by storm. So undoubtedly, the participation of big brands in the entire movement and boycott was predictable.