Twinings has decided to remove its image offering a baby bottle to the new heir to the throne after concern that Twinings – and Oreo as well – sent the wrong message to the royal new mom, who is breastfeeding Prince George.
|Twinings replaces bottle-feeding image in response to social media concerns.|
My blog post yesterday on the use of bottle images instead of breastfeeding images in marketing campaigns received tens of thousands of views: "Kate breastfeeds while major brands offer the prince a bottle" Some took to Twitter to express their concern about the Twinings and Oreo Internet campaigns.
Rachelle Lesteshen, who runs the Facebook page Unlatched, used her social media clout to
|Twinings tweets an apology,|
agrees to remove the bottle image.
Twinings' acknowledgement of the issue and fast action to address it show the company is well on its way to becoming social media savvy.
Oreo didn't quite do so well. When Lesteshen first saw the Oreo bottle ad she responded with a tongue-in-cheek play on Oreo's own rogue breastfeeding ad, which went viral last year.
Oreo's clumsy response was to delete Lesteshen's post to their Facebook page. This is known as the "nothing to see here, move along" tactic:
Lesteshen is still hoping Oreo will take more positive action, saying "maybe they will see that other companies agree that bottle imagery is a bad idea."
|Ulnatched's Rachelle Lesteshen shared this suggestion with Oreo on their Facebook page.|
Oreo removed Lesteshen's post, but she shared it with her fans.
Lesteshen, whose top reach on Facebook approached half a million people,
has also sent a note to Oreo about the Twinings decision.
Bottle images are ubiquitous in our society as synonymous with "baby." We shy away from
|Left: John Lewis department store bottle image, removed after concerns|
expressed by the Analytical Armadillo and her readers.
Right: San Jose International Airport (via Hygeia Baby)
These changes are small but important victories for breastfeeding educators. Two small changes in a sea of bottle images may not seem like a big deal, but they show savvy companies are responsive to public pressure when they realize they could be doing something that is harmful, not just to their reputation, but to mothers and babies.
The winners here are not just the companies themselves but the millions of new breastfeeding moms who are slowly beginning to to see supportive imagery when they are out and about in public, and when they turn to the Internet for advice.