Orlando residents should request proof from companies that claim to give back to community in ads

During the drive from downtown Orlando to east Seminole County yesterday, I heard two commercials, one from a major bank and the other from a chain restaurant, bragging about giving profits back to the community. This isn’t the first time I’ve heard commercials like these.

The issue here is that one claimed to address the affordable housing crisis here in Orlando (the other community hunger), something that is a real problem with no easy solution in sight.

While community responsibility in advertising has unfortunately become more of a fad than a gesture of authenticity, I couldn’t remember any of the times I’ve heard of these major corporations actually giving back to the Orlando community through earned media from a reputable news organization.

Residents should want proof of this work.

Why? Because if it’s not true, these ads shouldn’t be running in this market.

Let’s not get it twisted. These corporations probably aren’t lying, but the often the money that makes it to an actual community cause is pennies compared to the return of investment of being seen as charitable by the community. In the case of the bank, it’s more likely that these are just home loans dressed in the clothes of community giving.

If that’s the case, it needs to be spelled out that way.

In the case of community hunger, a web page with local expenditures isn’t too much to ask.

The point here is that we don’t want you on the radio bragging about how you’re helping our community if you’re not actually helping the community.

And if you are, then show us where, and we’ll be happy to send you some business, along with a “thank you”for actually doing something to make the environments around you a better place to live.

 

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