By: Brandy Haslam, MBA

“There is no such thing as bad publicity.”

The news has been flooding our newsfeeds, our TV, radio (and if you’re into that type of thing), the newspaper. If you didn’t know who Colin Kaepernick is, you sure do now.

The football star, a former quarterback for the 49ers, raised eyebrows back in 2016 when he kneeled for the National Anthem to raise awareness of the social injustices faced by African Americans. This morning he’s the face of Nike’s new “Dream Crazy” ad campaign.

Bad publicity? Maybe not.

The ad, pushed out this morning for Nike’s 30th anniversary “Just Do it” campaign, features several famous athletes including Serena Williams, LeBron James, Odell Beckham and Nyjah Huston. A message that is supposed to inspire us to overcome adversity and chase our dreams has led many of us to burn our Nike’s and run around barefoot. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, update your feed!

Although some analysts say that Nike is taking a big risk with the new campaign, we can’t help but notice that within 24 hours, they scored over $43 million dollars of advertising, for free. Jaw drops to the floor.

So let’s get down to business. Most of us reading this are probably small business owners in the research or medical field. In our industry, we can all agree that negative press or better yet, negative online reviews thanks to Google, Yelp and other platforms, can kill a practice and its reputation. We aren’t running multi-million-dollar apparel companies or getting millions of dollars in ads, and we definitely don’t have the face of famous athletes playing in our favor.

The idea that there is no bad publicity may have some of you shaking your head and understandably so.

Although much less significant than Nike, most of us have some sort of negative press that goes on every day at our companies, probably without much notice.

Those negative comments left on your campaign ads – you know what I’m talking about. “Research is for guinea pigs,” “You’re going to grow a third arm!” Yep, those ones. While they are bad, they offer your company first and foremost, a way to start a conversation. A way to educate, send a message, inspire action and dispel stereotypes.

Maybe not in Nike fashion, but the concept is the same.

A wise woman once said that publicity is publicity, good or bad is just an opinion.

So while we hope that your publicity is good, we beg the question, who gets to determine good from bad?

Our advice? Just do it.

Need some PR at your site or practice? We’ve got a team for that. Call us today at (866) YES-BLOOM (2566). Yes, we know there’s an extra digit but it still rings. We promise.

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