Beverly B. Media and Communications

The Marketing of Awareness: The Hijacking of Your Favorite Month


Written by Beverly B. Media and Communications

Well it’s February and you know what that means? Ground Hog day, Super Bowl Sunday, Valentine’s day, and of course Black History Month.  I have to admit the only time I really sit down and appreciate the depth of my black history is during February.

Understand I am not belittling the importance of Black History Month or my heritage, but as an African-American woman I am always living black history.  But this post isn’t just about Black History Month it’s about all the other months to follow.  No, I don’t mean March or April, I mean Breast Cancer Month, Women History Month, AIDS awareness Month and any other “Month” I am not familiar with or have not mentioned.  Each awareness month is important because of its ability to bring… well… awarness to the different causes that effect people we know and those we pass on the street.

The commercials, the walks, and the fundraisers are all needed and appreciated.  Millions of lives are saved every year because of funds raised by these events, and with the advancement of social media the vehicle on educating the masses is unlimited. However there are times when the events seem to become bigger than the disease. Like Thanksgiving and Christmas, are these months being marketed just to make a dollar?

In 2011 the movie “Pink Ribbons” blasted corporations for their use of the symbolic pink ribbon. Lea Pool, director of the made-in-Canada documentary, stated  “I was very afraid of all the corporations and how they hijacked the disease and how they made profits out of that, and how there is pink-washing in the process of doing fund-raising.”  In the process of promoting a paticular cause we must not lose heart of the situation. Love ones were lost to the civil rights movement, to AIDS, to breast cancer, and we must never forget those who gave their lives or lost their lives for a cause we celebrate one month out of the year.  These people were more than a color, more than a commercial, more than a sale.

Maybe I should take my own advise and look beyond my own situation. What other awareness is happening this month?

Click to see other causes happening this month

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