“Yes, &” newsletter will inspire you to approach your brand with the spirit of improvisation, embracing new ideas and building on them in unexpected ways. It’s a mindset that can help you thrive in today’s fast-paced and ever-changing business landscape. Here we’ll share stories of brands that have improvised to solve problems, connect with customers, and create breakthrough campaigns. Unlock your team’s potential by saying “Yes, and” to the endless possibilities of creativity.

You can’t please everyone. But there are better ways to handle the haters and critics, keep your dignity, and reinforce what your brand stands for.

Here’s how 3 brands are cleverly addressing the not-so-friendly commentary…

F*ck Oatly:  Oatly straight up dedicated an entire website to all of the boycotts, cancellations, and lawsuits targeting their brand. Why? To show that they are not afraid to ruffle a few feathers – in their words, “We see all the negative headlines, posts and petitions as an inevitable consequence of trying to create positive societal change.” and to educate those haters. The site also functions as a timeline for all of the moments in history when Oatly ‘walked the talk’ and stared controversy in the face.

 Yes, & … When your brand has conviction in the bigger purpose you’re fighting for, you’ll have an easier time standing up for what you believe in. So, go ahead, put it all out there. Tell the nay-sayers to mind their business.

Hellmann’s McHack: When McDonald’s received some shade for not offering mayo as a dipping sauce, Hellmann’s jumped on the opportunity to turn hate into hacks. This campaign involved a series of content creators instructing mayonnaise-obsessed customers to order the Mayo Chicken burger sans chicken, bun and lettuce – hence leaving only the mayo. The hack generated tons of buzz on social and is a best in class example of how to push the boundaries to connect your brand with new customers. 

Yes, & … One brand’s shade is another brand’s campaign opportunity. Ideas are found in the comments – keep your eyes and ears out for customer complaints that relate to your product. Whether they are actually directed at your brand or not is immaterial. Create a solution. Win the day!

 #KFCProposal: Okay, this one happened back in 2019, but landed on our radar just recently. After a journalist made fun of a guy for proposing at a KFC in South Africa, the brand took action to find the couple, celebrate them on social, and even paid for a wedding planner. Soon after, brands like Audi, Kulula Airlines, and Coca-cola jumped in to gift the couple with free goodies.

Yes, & …  Find every opportunity to celebrate a loyal customer – especially when your brand plays a supporting role for a significant event in their lives. Give them some (meaningful) free stuff, let it be a heart-warming moment when your brand shows up in service of your audience. It costs next to nothing and creates potential for free promotion if the story gets picked up.

Could your brand use more creative improvisation to help you out-think your competitors? Work with DENTR.