In alphabetical order
This category celebrates the brands that have successfully promoted to or are popular with the LGBT+ community.
Absolut has been supporting the LGBT+ community since 1981, when, even as a relatively unknown brand, they ran adverts in LGBT+ magazines. Since then, their consistent support over the years has seen them create numerous LGBT+ based adverts, including the first-ever rainbow-coloured spirits bottle, amongst various other activations. In 2018, the brand wrapped two London buses in a rainbow print and allowed passengers to donate to Stonewall by tapping their smartphones on the back of the seats. A spokesperson for Absolut said: “For 35 years, Absolut has stood with the LGBTQ community and we are proud to support the vital work Stonewall do to promote equality.”
LOVE IS LOVE
As a brand, Coca-Cola commits itself to supporting the LGBT+ community worldwide, lending its branding to the inclusion of marginalised individuals. The brand has supported Pride events, donned the rainbow flag, and recently they put their foot down as a staunch ally in the face of public, homophobic backlash directed at LGBT+ inclusive adverts in Hungary.
RAINBOW REUSABLE CUP
In 2019 to celebrate PRIDE, Costa Coffee launched a limited edition rainbow reusable cup; with all profits donated to their new partner charity, Switchboard LGBT. This ran alongside a rainbow Costa cup, and fuelled excitement for internal activity and involvement in 7 PRIDE marches, led by Shine; the Costa LGBT+ employee network.
With over 10% of Costa’s UK based employees identifying as LGBT+, and a broad, diverse customer base, the coffee chain supports and celebrates the fantastic work that Switchboard do, and were proud to support them in achieving this. Through cup sales Costa donated over 15K to Switchboard in 2019, raised heightened levels of awareness for the charity through social media and information shared in store; resulting in a significant spike in the number of contacts received by Switchboard.
Evian delighted the LGBT+ community when, after the release of branding that involved a same-sex couple holding hands as part of their ‘Prestige’ range, the brand clapped back at homophobic claims that their bottles were “gay propaganda”. The shut-down involved a Twitter reply telling the troll to “delete your account” with a sassy figure made from punctuation holding up the letters. Suffice it to say, the tweet went viral and Evian has had a place in our hearts ever since.
SHAVE, OR DON’T
Harry’s has a proud history of working with organisations that help challenge out-dated stereotypes and who aim to shift attitudes and behaviours that devalue marginalised groups. Harry’s is an inclusive brand for all men, celebrating their differences, striving for inclusion and acceptance for all.
Highlighting their positivity contribution to the LGBTQ+ community, Harry’s launched their Shave, Or Don’t campaign in April’19, featuring a transgender man among other, cisgender men marking a positive change for advocacy and continuing growth in acceptance and understanding of the transgender community. The hope with this campaign was to empower and encourage their customers to use what they make in a way that feels right to them.
LOVE DOESN’T REQUIRE INSTRUCTIONS
Here at IKEA we believe ‘love doesn’t require instructions’ – as a values-driven company, we’re committed to ensuring that our LGBT+ co-workers and customers can be themselves. In 2019, as a visible sign of our commitment, we produced a limited edition rainbow version of our iconic FRAKTA bag, with 100% of sales helping us to participate in local Pride events and support LGBT+ causes and charities. This initative came from our co-workers who wanted us to be much more vocal about our support for LGBT+ equality, with all 22 of our UK stores going all-in on celebrating our values and diversity.
THE FRENCH EXCHANGE
Renault aims to bring people’s passion for life a little closer through its cars. It wanted to humanise and celebrate, not just thirty years of progress of the Renault Clio, but also the progress made within culture, society and life in that time. ‘The French Exchange’ film has been discussed, supported, and praised globally within LGBTQ communities, family forums, international TV and press. Originally a UK campaign, it has been picked up by 23 markets globally, with rumour that an Italian MP is campaigning to have the ad aired on Italian TV to raise awareness of inclusivity and same sex relationships.
In 2019 Smirnoff reinforced its role as a strong LGBT+ ally through the brand’s We’re Open partnership renewal with the LGBT Foundation and Stonegate Pub Company. This partnership has helped make nightlife safer for the LGBT+ community, initially by donating money to aid the LGBT Foundation’s ‘Village Angels’ in Manchester and more recently forming the ‘Soho Angels’ in London. As Sam Salameh, head of Smirnoff said, “In helping to expand the Village Angels team in London and at Pride events we hope to make nightlife safer and we look forward to seeing the positive impact that this fundraising drive will have on the much-valued work and services that the Angels provide.”
TRANSPORT FOR LONDON
TfL kick-started Pride 2019 with a trio of inclusive roundels on the transport network. The Bi Pride roundel joined the now iconic rainbow and Trans roundels, each carrying the hashtag #EveryStoryMatters. A series of posters featuring TfL LGBT+ staff and allies was installed across the network to encourage people to be proud of who they are. TfL believes London is a place where you can be who you are and love who you want to love. #EveryStoryMatters celebrates LGBT+ Londoners of all races, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities, everyone is welcome here and London is truly open to all.
UNITED WE WIN
In recognition of Stonewall’s 50th Anniversary, Under Armour’s second annual United We Win (UWW) Pride collection pays homage to the chaos and beauty of Stonewall. The product line launched in June of 2019 and the product and marketing campaign was an authentic collaboration between the marketing team, product team and Under Armour’s LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group, Unified. It also allowed consumers to see Under Armour’s values come to life. Proceeds from the product line were used to support Athlete Ally, a non-profit organization aimed at educating and activating athletic communities to eliminate homophobia and transphobia in sports.