What makes people believe in a brand’s activist efforts? How can companies connect with values-minded consumers? And can creativity save the world? In this part of the 2021 Expert Outlook, we speak to three experts about how the multiple crises of 2020 will impact consumer citizenship.
Leslie Mac is an organiser, strategist, and communications expert. She currently serves as the communications director for The Frontline. A seasoned digital strategist and social media advisor, she helps her clients, via LM Consulting, create diverse, imaginative campaigns and branding that focus on inclusivity and justice-minded content. Her clients have included Google, UltraViolet, Articulate, UMass Amherst, Amazon, Meadville Lombard Theological School, Stardust Fund, and The Advancement Project.
Bisila Bokoko is an internationally acclaimed businesswoman. For seven years, she held the position of executive director of the Spain-US Chamber of Commerce in New York. She then launched BBES, her consulting firm, in 2012.
Between 1999 and 2014, Bel Jacobs was Style Editor for Metro. The fall of Rana Plaza in 2013 forced a re-assessment; today, she is a writer, speaker and activist with a focus on animal rights, climate justice, alternative systems in fashion and the need to transform culture in answer to the climate emergency. She is co-founder of Fashion Act Now, a campaign group with a focus on de-growth; co-founder of Islington Climate Centre, a community centre aiming to inform, engage and connect communities to the realities of and solutions to the climate emergency; founder of The Empathy Project, which aims to reframe human and animal relationships for the benefit of all.
India Doyle is the editorial director of Canvas8's Library. She oversees the editorial direction of research across content types to ensure Canvas8 members understand changes in consumer behaviour and culture and the opportunities around behavioural change. India has worked as a journalist for ten years, interviewing industry and cultural leaders including Christy Turlington, Olympic boxer Ramla Ali, and Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös. She has contributed to SHOWStudio, Dazed and Confused, ekathimerini, Wonderland, and Dapper Dan magazine.
Teen activist Howey Ou is cutting a lone figure by crusading for environmental awareness in China. With Greta Thunberg accepted by (much of) the world, Ou is fighting obstacles – including being barred from school and interrogated by police – to be a role model for younger audiences.
The events of 2020 have seen organisations across the world denounce systemic racism, but dismantling racial bias is complex and time-consuming work. Canvas8 spoke to Dr. Anatasia Kim to discuss the concept of allyship and how it can be fulfilled at an organisational level.
The ways that people interact with businesses have been overhauled in 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic and Black Lives Matter protests amplifying demands for brands to acknowledge and respond to social ills. So, how can companies translate their values into meaningful action?
Instead of the coronavirus pandemic being the ‘great leveller’, it has highlighted the number of people who deal with food insecurity. Working to get meals to vulnerable Londoners, The Felix Project uses surplus restaurant and supermarket food to fight food poverty in the capital.