We love working with businesses that are out to do good.

And more and more consumers are holding brands accountable for their role in combating global issues like the climate crisis, race relations, and gender equality. 

In fact, a whopping 62% of customers want brands to take a stand on global issues.

Many of these brands have started to create fantastic thought-provoking and hard-hitting social campaigns, raising awareness and encouraging other companies to take action.

Here are our favourite social marketing campaigns of the first half of 2021, championing social and environmental causes.

Dove – Reverse Selfie

Part of the brand’s ongoing Self-Esteem Project, Dove’s ‘Reverse Selfie’ film is a poignant and shocking look into the impact of social media and selfie culture on children. Showing a reversal of what appears to be a woman, her true identity as a young girl highlights how extreme image distortion can be, and how it negatively affects users.

Watch Dove’s Reverse Selfie.


Ecologi – Seeds of Hope

Ecologi’s Earth Day campaign tells the story of how sowing seeds of hope can inspire future generations to change the world. Spoken word artist George the Poet features on the film with a powerful script, urging everyone to consider the ‘world we leave behind’.

See George the Poet feature in Ecologi’s Seeds of Hope.


Girl Up – Today We Rise

This film by gender equality initiative Girl Up captured the powerful moment when Kamala Harris became the first female, African American, and Asian American Vice President of the United States. Seen through the eyes of young girls, the film highlights just how historic and meaningful the event truly was for groups around the world. 

Watch how Girl Up – Today We Rise captures the historic moment


Corona – Plastic Fishing

Beer brand Corona recently launched the first ever ‘plastic fishing’ competition, with fishermen in Mexico competing to win the biggest catch of plastic. Three tons of plastic were removed from the ocean in the process. Being a brand associated with the sea and ‘beach life’, the tournament seamlessly tied in sustainability efforts with brand image.

Check out Corona’s clever use of brand image; Corona – Plastic Fishing.


CALM – Tyson Fury and the Invisible Opponent

The new campaign for suicide prevention charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) uses real footage of boxer Tyson Fury’s 2018 fight against Deontay Wilder. With Wilder edited out, Tyson is instead seen fighting an ‘invisible opponent’. The video is a strong representation of the battle against mental health, highlighting how the struggle can affect anybody – including heavyweight boxing champions.

CALM – Tyson Fury and the Invisible Opponent


Recent changes in consumer demands and buyer behaviour have pushed brands to consider social and environmental concerns in their business and marketing strategies. 

This trend has made businesses reevaluate their own carbon footprint, employee wellbeing, and adopt sustainable policies. It has also given us a host of campaigns that are brilliant from both a marketing perspective, and a social and environmental standpoint.

What do you think? Should brands include more campaigns like these, or should they avoid speaking out on social or political issues? Despite consumer demand, 66% of marketing managers believe their company should avoid addressing contentious social or political issues. 

Either way, it’s certainly interesting to see the range of creative content being produced, challenging the marketing norm.

Any other fantastic social marketing campaigns from 2021 that we missed? Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn to join the conversation.

Find out how Astley Media can help align your brand with your customers’ values. Get in touch: hello@astleymedia.co.uk