Marketing

OkCupid goes where few brands will: pro-choice advertising

Its latest campaign includes a nod to “pro-choicers.”
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OkCupid

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OkCupid isn’t a brand to keep quiet on social issues—even when the MTA disapproves. As part of its “Every Single Person” campaign, which debuted last year and is now back for round two, the dating app is running an OOH ad in the NYC subway welcoming “pro-choicers” to its service. It comes days after the 49th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, when the landmark decision’s future has perhaps never been more uncertain.

It’s not the first time the brand has spoken about the cause. Owned by Dallas–based Match Group, OkCupid began giving users the option to add a pro-choice badge to their profile in September after the passage of Texas’ SB 8 law, which bans most abortions after around six weeks of pregnancy and authorizes private citizens to sue suspected violators. At the time, the brand said every time a user added the badge, the company would donate $1 to Planned Parenthood (up to $50,000).

Big picture: A handful of brands stepped up to take a pro-choice stance on abortion after SB 8 passed, including Ben & Jerry’s and fellow dating app Bumble. But it’s not often you see an explicitly pro-choice ad. (Unlike anti-abortion ads, which seem to thrive on every interstate in America.)

Despite a majority of Americans believing that abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to Pew, many brands have been hesitant to take a public stance on it. American Airlines, AT&T, Oracle, and Apple were some of the brands with operations in Texas that were called out for not speaking up after SB 8 was passed.

OkCupid’s global chief marketing officer, Melissa Hobley, called it “shameful” that companies aren’t doing more:

  • “We’ve seen corporate response to other things, and that’s so important,” Hobley told Ad Age. “It’s just the deafening silence on this issue, when most Americans still support women’s right to choose, is pretty terrible.”

+1: PepsiCo is currently facing a boycott over its $15k donation to the Texas Republican Party, dated almost three months after Governor Greg Abbott signed SB 8 into law. PepsiCo said the donation was made in 2020 but was cashed the following year.—KH

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