The Power of Consumer Spending

“Company A’s founder resigned as chairman of the company’s board late Wednesday, after touching off a firestorm of criticism when he confirmed that he had used a racial slur during a conference call with a marketing agency,” posts The Washington Post on July 12, 2018 (Rosenberg, 2018).  Shortly after the comments were made public the company’s stock fell five percent.  Some believe the drop was due to a reaction to the comments made by the founder during the business call.  The actual reason is unknown. 

The above example of profit or stock fluctuation after a public event is not uncommon in business.  There are several similar cases in the food sector, the sports sector, the political sector, the film sector, and many other areas where public opinion impacts an individual or a company.  The thing to note is that the fluctuation happens and why.    Cheryl McNeil (2013) points out that Black buying power is on the rise; and is expected to reach $1.3 trillion by 2017 (McNeil, 2013).  The fact that this quote speaks about black buying power is representative of each of us that are active consumers-Blacks, Hispanics, Whites, Indians, Asians, and other ethnicities.  We all have an identity, beliefs, and values.  Consumers are from a diverse background.  We live all over the world.  As consumers, we have a voice.  We can speak through our spending habits, and we should.  The first thing an angry group of individuals mad at an offending company, and who understand the voice of money, will do is call for a “boycott of the company”.    Some may boycott for the cause, some may not.  Boycotts are not effective if they are unorganized with low participation. Because organization and mass participation is required, Faces-of-Money will provide readers with information about companies that will help readers to make purchases that patronize companies that support them.   

Finally, the challenge of “if we should” or “if we shouldn’t” buy products from an offending company is forever present.  Companies will often have an excuse as to why their workforce is not diversified racially and by gender.  Companies will often have an excuse as to why their product-line does not include products that fit or cater to the needs of consumers beyond a specific group.  Companies will often have an excuse as to why their practices are unaccepting of non-traditional couples, religion, or the idea that America is a community of diversity.   Let’s face it, we like the products of some of the companies that do not value us beyond our purchases.  If people accept the excuses and continue to buy the products sold by companies that do not value them, the practices of the company will not change. It is a decision that each of us must make, as to whether we will spend our hard-earned money on products from a company that does not hire, advertise to, make products for, or “value” us.  If you do choose to stand for your own interest, remember it takes time for change to occur.  Don’t boycott for a short amount of time.  Protect your dollars until the change happens.  Also, send a note to the company letting them know your intent.  The Power of Money is that it is a force of influence that can bring about change, alter events, and change perception.  The FORCE metaphor defines money as a forceful entity that can exert a strong influence on people (KÖVECSES, 2018).  

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References

KÖVECSES, Z. (2018). The power (and problem) of money1. Society and Economy;, 365-376.

McNeil, C. (2013, October). Black Consumer power still matters in market. Philadelphia Trbune, p. 2013.

Rosenberg, E. (2018, July 12). Papa John’s founder resigns hours after apologizing for using the n-word. Retrieved from The Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/business/wp/2018/07/11/papa-johns-founder-apologizes-for-using-the-n-word/?utm_term=.146e4f391e34

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