In a world where Brexit means breakfast and a Tweet could play a Franz Ferdinand style role in modern history, audiences are more polarised than ever and much quicker to proclaim moral outrage.
Thanks to the web, what would have been conversations over the water cooler the next morning are now conversations across oceans immediately after. Angst is actionable and backlash is bigger and more effective than ever before. Brands are rightfully wary of the risks of creating content that cuts through, especially with an ever-growing demographic of easily offended, millennial “snowflakes”.
Pepsi have proven that to try and dulcify this ‘woke’ blizzard can result in some serious frostbite. Their advert that intended to project “a message of global unity, peace and understanding” only managed to unite the internet in a global gag that saw the pulling of the advert and the (previously unheard of) silencing of a Jenner on social media.
So what’s the answer, how can outrage be a positive force? Trump of course. It’s always Trump.
Donald Trump’s antics prove again and again that when you melt a load of snowflakes you create a flood; a flood of conversation, debate and free publicity. The rhetoric around him is positively negative and visa versa. Never one to shy away from the spotlight, this blonde behemoth of social media turned his biggest oppositions into his greatest assets and managed to ride the wave of controversy into the White House.
Trump is only a billionaire when it comes to the currency of outrage. For SXSW 2018, Don’t Panic’s MD Joe Wade wants to show brands how they too can cash in on this new cryptocurrency and capitalise on divided public opinion, through digital platforms, just like Trump.
Vote for him here: