You Can’t Please Everyone All The Time
The tragic death of George Floyd at the hands of four police officers in Minneapolis last month has resulted in an outpouring of support for the Black Lives Matter movement from companies and individuals alike, culminating in protests against racism and police brutality taking place in more than 50 countries across the world.
Depressingly, however, there are always those who feel the need to decry such well-intentioned movements and use it as an opportunity to share their ill-informed points of view instead. Those who do so generally operate from the safety of social media, which allows them to maintain a degree of anonymity. When they target businesses that wouldn’t normally take part in political discussions and force them to respond, it can be extremely difficult for their PR or comms teams to know what to say in order to preserve their clients’ reputations.
Unless you work in the tea industry, that is.
When a prominent far-right YouTuber (yes, unfortunately that’s a thing now) praised Yorkshire Tea on Twitter for not publicly announcing its support for Black Lives Matter, the company was quick to clarify its position, responding: “Please don’t buy our tea again. We’re taking some time to educate ourselves and plan proper action before we post. We stand against racism.”
When another Twitter user joined the conversation and suggested the aforementioned YouTuber switch to PG Tips, they too don’t hesitate to reply, tweeting: “If you are boycotting teas that stand against racism, you’re going to have to find two new tea brands now.” A third tea company, Teapigs, joined in soon after, saying: “Make that three.”
In the UK, it’s common knowledge that putting the kettle on and having a cuppa makes most things right again. While a mug of hot tea isn’t going to eradicate racism, thanks to some bold and unapologetic tea brands, we now know for sure that when it comes to racists, telling them to take their business elsewhere doesn’t harm your reputation one iota. We’ll raise a brew to that.