- Unilever's Seventh Generation brand of eco-friendly cleaning and personal care products started a campaign to raise awareness about climate change. The effort pays tribute to the past while urging people around the world to join the brand in working to ensure that Earth will be habitable for future generations, per an announcement shared with Marketing Dive.
- The campaign includes 30- and 60-second spots invoking the Greatest Generation, which persevered during the Great Depression and fought in World War II, while also showing youth activists working to tackle climate change. The spot originally aired after the State of the Union Address on Feb. 4. The campaign includes print and broadcast and was developed by Portland, Oregon, agency Opinionated.
- In addition, Seventh Generation appointed activist and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez to its social mission board. The brand is donating $75,000 to the Youth Climate Action Fund to help fund grants for youth activists as they prepare to rally during the Global Climate Strike that's timed with the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, per the announcement.
Seventh Generation's campaign aims to celebrate the efforts of young conservationists who have gained greater attention in the past few years, exemplified by 17-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, who organized the first Global Climate Strike, in which the brand participated. The ads show how today's climate activists are part of a historical tradition of people who respond to crises. The brand took aim at the Trump administration by airing the ad on all three major U.S. broadcast networks after last week's State of the Union address and before the Democratic response, Ad Age reported.
The cause-driven campaign is consistent with Seventh Generation's brand identity in eco-friendly products, whose sales have grown more quickly than other consumer packaged goods (CPG) categories. Fifty percent of CPG sales growth came from sustainability marketed products while only making up 17% of the market from 2013 to 2018, according to the New York University Center for Sustainable Business (CSB). Sales for sustainability marketed products rose 5.6 times faster than conventionally marketed products when measured by gross merchandise value, the research found. In addition, Kantar Consulting's Purpose 2020 report said that purpose-driven brands grow two times faster than others and resonate with millennials and Generation Z consumers, pointing to why many brands have recently begun to support causes in their marketing.
Parent company Unilever, which has a website dedicated to its sustainability programs, this year will direct more of its marketing spend to support purpose-based messaging. Brand purpose is one of the company's five key growth fundamentals, supporting short- and long-term growth.
Unilever's Dove last year partnered with Getty Images and the creative network Girlgaze to create #ShowUs, a stock image library of women taken by female, non-binary and female-identifying photographers in an effort to increase diversity in advertising imagery. Unilever's personal care brand Love Beauty and Planet in December ran an ad in The New York Times that could be reused as holiday wrapping paper and urged people to reuse items during the holiday season.