How brands and agencies are celebrating International Women’s Day

While some honor women in the workplace, others highlight the grim realities of the COVID-19 pandemic for women.

COVID-19 has shined a light on the many hats women wear, from caregiver, to homeschooler, to full-time executive. 

As a result women have been disproportionately impacted by job losses during the pandemic; 80% of all workers over the age of 20 who left the workforce in January were women.

The issue is even more acute for women of color. Black women aged 20 and older, are dropping out of the workforce at a 25% higher rate than the national average, while Hispanic and Latina women are leaving at a nearly 50% higher rate. 

While some agencies and brands are recognizing the tough year women have had this International Women’s Day, others are celebrating women in the workforce. Others still are shining light on the realities of being a woman, such as Friday Mom’s spot about breastfeeding that aired during the Golden Globes.

Here are some examples of how brands are showing up on International Women’s day:  

Tubi

FOX’s free streaming service, is honoring Women’s History Month by highlighting a curated list of female-centric titles, spanning from women leads, documentaries about notable women and female-directed films.

Saks OFF 5th  

Saks OFF 5th partnered with Girls Inc., a non-profit committed to empowering girls’ futures, to create an exclusive, limited edition chain bracelet honoring female connection. The bracelet will sell for $39 during March in U.S. stores and online, and Saks OFF 5th will donate 15% of proceeds to Girls Inc. 

“Regardless of your political affiliation, history has been made this year, as our country celebrates the election of Kamala Harris to Vice President,” said Paige Thomas, president and CEO of Saks OFF 5TH in a statement. We must ensure that all young women have the opportunity to be successful as their true, authentic selves.” 

Survivor

Cell phone accessory brand Survivor is amplifying several women’s stories online, including army veteran and former Miss USA Deshauna Barber and Olympic track and field athlete Tianna Bartoletta. The series, called “Survivor Stories,” will run online and on Survivor’s social channels. 

Survivor will donate 25% of the proceeds from its Verizon store sales to Service Women’s Action Network, a non-profit that advocates for female military servicemembers and vets. 

Häagen-Dazs

Häagen-Dazs is renaming four ice cream flavors — vanilla, belgian chocolate, salted caramel and strawberries & cream — after women trailblazers in the United Arab Emirates.

The women include: Raha Moharrak, the youngest Arab and first Saudi woman to climb Mount Everest and the seven summits; Yasmin Yousri, a three-time cancer survivor, style coach, blogger and art director; Nayla Al Khaja, the first award-winning female director and producer in the UAE; and Maz Hakim, a TEDx speaker on refugees in Afghanistan who recently launched a women-led clothing line. 

The new names will allude to the accomplishments of each: Vanilla will be called “Scale New Heights”; Salted Caramel is renamed ‘Beat the Odds’; ‘Direct My Story’ will stand in for  Belgian Chocolate; and ‘Design My Destiny’ will be the new name for strawberries and cream. 

Starting March 14, Häagen-Dazs is asking people across the region to nominate other women to share their stories with the hashtag #DontHoldBack. The brand and the four women honored will pick two nominations, after whom Häagen-Dazs will rename its cookies and cream and vanilla caramel brownie ice creams, two of its most popular flavors.  

E.l.f Cosmetics

E.l.f. Cosmetics and Wattpad are joining forces for #EyesLipsFierce, a campaign that invites Wattpad’s U.S. community to publish stories about women who inspire them. For every story published throughout March with the hashtag #EyesLipsFierce, the companies will donate $1 (up to $10,000) to Girls Inc.

The campaign kicks off with stories from Wattpad influencers Shay Bravo, author of Historically Inaccurate, Rachel Meinke, author of Along for the Ride and H.J. Nelson, author of The Last She. Five entries will be featured in a video on E.l.f. social media channels and the winning authors will receive an E.l.f. swag bag and a $500 Visa gift card. The campaign builds on E.l.f’s viral TikTok campaign #EyesLipsFace

GoDaddy 

GoDaddy is running a “No Apologies” campaign across social media to celebrate unapologetic women throughout history, including GoDaddy customer Paloma Teppa, founder of Plant the Future. The goal is to encourage other women to stop apologizing. 

"As a woman in business, I’m impressed with women entrepreneurs who approach challenges with boldness and conviction,” Fara Howard, CMO of GoDaddy said in a statement. “They inspire others with their fearlessness and propel more women to take that first step.”

Unstereotype Alliance and Getty Images

Unstereotype Alliance, which aims to eradicate gender bias in media and advertising, is collaborating with Getty Images to curate a gallery of diverse, inclusive and non-stereotyped images during Women’s History Month.

N26 and Mackenzie Investments

Mobile banking brand N26 is launching an AR filter on Facebook and Instagram on International Women’s Day that challenges the gender imbalance in cash notes by depicting prominent female leaders on dollar bills and euros.

And Canadian investment fund Mackenzie Investments has a spot honoring American finance legend Geraldine Weiss, which uses stop motion and animation to depict her impact on the finance world during her era. 

Agencies are also taking it upon themselves to recognize women this month. Here’s how:

Wunderman Thompson 

Wunderman Thompson created a thought leadership series and social media campaign called This Woman’s Work, celebrating allyship among women who work in the advertising business. 

The agency will also host a panel on March 18, led by global chief inclusion, equity and diversity officer Ezinne Okoro, that will focus on the intersection of women’s professional and personal lives.  

Burns Group 

Ad agency Burns Group partnered with nonprofit Catalyst for the third year to run its #BiasCorrect campaign, which underscores the barriers women face in the workplace. This year, the campaign will highlight racial and gender barriers with five virtual meeting backgrounds that ask provocative questions to prompt uncomfortable conversations at work, followed by a panel discussion addressing the prompts. 

The campaign includes an Instagram filter that turns people into a custom lip avatar to portray invisible barriers in the workplace. Catalyst will also share animated videos featuring women telling their stories about workplace barriers. 

Siegel+Gale

Siegel+Gale created 12 posters celebrating its “Choose to Challenge” campaign. The posters depict iconic females, such as RBG and Stacey Abrams, and encourage women to speak up. The posters available for download through Siegel + Gale’s Instagram page. The agency is also hosting a panel with women leaders from Mattel, HSBC, Dubai Holding, IBM and Penguin Random House to discuss how brands and marketers can use their platforms to strive for equity on March 8. 

Chemistry 

Full-service agency Chemistry created greeting cards with sayings including “Clicking ‘Leave Meeting’ is the new orgasm” and “I just breastfed through that entire Zoom call” as part of “The Queen of All Trades Collection.” The campaign pokes fun at the challenges women have faced this year while breaking stigmas around working moms. The agency will donate all proceeds to InHerShoes, a nonprofit dedicated to helping girls find their voices. 

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